Fracture Update and the Return to Running

Life has sort of gotten in the way of keeping updates going with the 5th metatarsal fracture other than the random facebook or twitter post.  At 5.5 weeks in I abandoned the walking boot altogether (per the bone doc’s instructions at the beginning) so that I could drive myself places. Also the little matter of it not drying out after one particularly muddy dog-walking session might have contributed a bit to the not using the boot.  Flexibility has continued to improve and I even managed to get through the other instructors’ sessions at our CYQ 2 practical assessment day a couple of weeks ago–although I was beginning to tire and limp slightly during the last one.

The next appointment to check on the healing progress was last Friday the 4th of December.  I should have known something was up when the x-ray technician asked how I’d managed to break my foot so thoroughly but I thought he was just trying to make polite conversation.  According to the doctor the bone has shown absolutely no sign of union and the x-ray taken that day looked almost exactly the same as the first! Yes, the first thought in my head was ‘Are you sure you are looking at the right set?’


The initial x-ray, I’m not bothering with the latest because it looks pretty much like this still

Unfortunately he was…However since there was zero swelling or bruising and it didn’t hurt when he prodded at the foot in various places he shrugged and said I might as well return to running–in a sensible manner of course, lol.  Metatarsal fractures can be tricky to heal up but since mine was the 5th metatarsal it’s supported and cradled by the other bones in the foot quite well. His theory was since I could walk without pain then adding in impact exercises (again in a sensible manner) would stimulate the bone growth (a TWSS moment, yes I have the humour of an adolescent boy sometimes) and they would see me in two months to check on the progress.

I am thankful that my partner had gone into the consultation room with me otherwise he would never have believed me when I said I was okayed to return to running! Mostly because he’d asked on the drive over to the medical centre what I was going to do if it wasn’t completely healed and I said I was going to start doing things my way since I’d done exactly what they had said for 7 weeks.

So then, the running–my first test run was on Sunday evening, I’m sure there are quite a few of you who are shocked that I didn’t go for one as soon as I got home but I did have a 45 minute dog walk that afternoon.  The first run was a loop around the village we live and surprisingly did better than expected–5k in 28:09 and it’s not a flat route.  I’ve since gone on to run twice more with the running club, last night was just over 6 miles.  It’s not fast but I’ve not felt like I was going to keel over either so if I was being less than sensible I could push harder.  The downhills are the only part that sets my foot to aching and even that is short-lived.

The being able to run 3 miles straight off is attributable to a couple of things–I have been doing a lot of dog-walking for the 3 weeks prior and the thrice-weekly core and strength workouts.  I couldn’t do the impact stuff until I got the clear but there had been lots of tabata and HIIT moves with everything else.  If that’s not a testimonial that strength training (and walking) is beneficial then I’m not sure what else it would take to convince people.  I already knew it was good for you but this proves just how much it is.

As for the aforementioned assessment, I received the confirmation yesterday that I passed all my exams, I now have a CYQ Level 2 in Fitness Walking certification, next step is to get the Personal Training Level 3 certification (once I figure out how to fund it!).


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