I’ve been fortunate as far as running injuries so far. About the worst I’ve had is some blisters, black toenails which then become missing toenails and some seriously ugly feet. My feet actually started out pretty awful but now I just blame it on running. More badass that way.
Until recently the only medical treatment I’ve had to seek out for running maladies is from the local pedicure salon. Every time a toe nail gets to a truly horrific state of jacked up I just go get a pedicure and all is well. Those ladies can sand down any mess I bring them and shape it into an almost acceptable looking foot. They’ll even paint the nailbeds where I am missing toenails. (THAT IS HOT! I know, don’t all develop crushes on me at once.) I tip really well and I apologize profusely. Podiatrists, take notice you have some serious competition down at the neighborhood nail salon! I mean its $25, walk in appt, and I leave with shiny new color. No contest.
A couple of days before the Columbia Marathon in March my shins started feeling a little wonky. Not pain. I didn’t say pain. I said wonky. When a runner claims pain all the haters jump off the couch and start doing the,”Running is bad! Your knees will turn to dust and your feet will fall off” dance. So unseemly, you guys, really. I iced the wonky shins all day long the day before the marathon so you’d think the problem would have just gone away, right? I know I did. But it didn’t. They didn’t hurt during the marathon but they were rough the whole next week.
I kept thinking my shins were just tired from two marathons in a three-week period. Whiny shins, I declared, y’all need to buck up because we got bigger fish to fry. I kept running on them because they didn’t feel wonky when I was running. They’re just wonky in between runs. Clearly the answer was more running…right?
Jeff has been seeing a Voodoo Witch Doctor (some of you may know them as “chiropractor”?)for the past couple years now and has been pestering me to do the same. Since I’ve been such a picture of health I blew him off. When I mentioned my wonky shins he jumped at the opportunity to hound me again. I’ve always had a terrible fear of chiropractors. I don’t like the neck cracking business. Seems just terrifying. Plus I’m kind of a straight arrow when it comes to medicine. I’m on board with clean eating and all that but I’m a bit timid with alternative treatments. Oh and I hate massage. And touching.
So, in review:
I don’t want anything cracked or manhandled.
I don’t want the needles or lasers or wackiness.
I described by symptoms to the Assistant VWD and she came back with a printed page of acupuncture points for shin splints. Uh oh. No wait I don’t want acupuncture. And it was then that I realized I really set myself up for this one. Apparently I’d deluded myself into thinking I’d describe my wonkies and he’d tell me to put ice on it and give me some stretches or something. I know what you are thinking, that would be a primary care physician or a physical therapist not a VWD. Where were you last week?!
Then the VWD made his appearance. Nice guy. Not thrilled with my Diet Coke habits and recommended upping all my vitamins and adding a few more. Okay cool. Thanks man. Oh wait, then he pulled on my toes a little hard. Oh hey not so bad really. I can do chiropractory. Yay. Oh damn, are those needles? He tapped a bunch of needles in. Couple of them stung a bit. Most didn’t but I still felt awkward and scared to move. He left me in the darkened room for 20 minutes and I sat there wishing I had my phone handy. I don’t meditate well.
All in all it went well and we scheduled three more appointments over the course of this week. I went for session two today. I kept my phone in my hand while he put the needles in their spots. A couple of them stung like crazy today. Then he left me in the dark room again. I knew immediately that I needed pictures because bloggers photo everything. This ain’t my first blog rodeo, people!
He had propped a foam roller under my knees and I was laying flat on my back. Oh and it was pitch black. Picture taking was to be a challenge.
For my first shot I randomly held the phone up high and got this:
I felt like it made my knees look weird (that rough-looking area on my right knee is a scrape from trail running. It’s not a soul patch. I know it looks like a soul patch. It’s not.) though so I rolled up in a sit up type motion to take this:
And HELLO are my calves that big? And the sock tan line? Rowr. So then to show that my calves are not ginormous I tried holding my leg straight up and taking this one:
And then the area just below my knee where those needles are at just started to spasm like a mofo. Probably because there were needles in it and I was contorting around like a buffoon trying to take pictures in the dark when I was supposed to be meditating on healing or something. I put my leg down and laid there clenched up and scared til the doctor came back. I mentioned the spasm and he said that was really weird. I didn’t mention the contortioning part though. I didn’t want him to think I was that stupid.
I’m already failing at voodoo. We’re shocked, right?