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  • Plantar Fascia

    Howdie,

    Am very anxious to move forward on my 46 but the last few hikes in the Catskills have done me in haha. I ignored the warning signs of plantar fasciitis and wound up putting a 4mm tear in my plantar fascia doing some hiking in a local park...good thing I shelved the Santinoni's I was hoping to do that same weekend or else I woulda wound up in the DEC Weekend report haha.

    Based on all the experience accumulated by you guys, was hoping you (by "you" I refer to anyone who has also unfortunately experienced the same injury) can offer some encouraging words and let me know how you were able to avoid subsequent symptoms and continue in the mountains. I'm wearing a boot (as per podiatrist) and using crutches which has helped tremendously in the first week.


    Not so concerned about how long it will take to get back to 100% (or at least close to it)...more so interested in full, thorough recovery. Guessing soon I should start PT?

    Anyone wear orthotics in their boots?

    Thanks guys and looking forward to see you in the Mountains!

  • #2
    I never had a tear, but got pretty serious plantar fasciitis after I started doing canoe trips and tried to carry too much at a time. I made it worse by hiking the Davis Path in the Whites on one day, before I was diagnosed. I recovered fairly fast once I started doing foot/ankle exercises and got some orthotics which I've worn since then all the time (not just hiking). And I've done double carries on canoe trips since then (half the gear on one, half on the other). Others I know also found it quite manageable, with the right treatment & maintenance. I also try to use lighter-weight gear even if it costs more. And I use hiking poles.

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    • #3
      I have orthotics and they helped immediately

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      • #4
        My wife had an initial symptoms of very a uncomfortable case of PF. Then we happened to visit Limmer Boots in NH. They advised some boots that could possibly help. She ended up with a pair of hiking boots And a pair of oxfords. Unfortunately they did not have my size of boots in stock, which was the primary reason for going there in the first place. But her PF cleared up after wearing both of her new Limmer purchases. I had to wait for my new boots to arrive by mail later.
        "Leave the beaten track behind occasionally and dive into the woods. Every time you do you will be certain to find something you have never seen before." - Alexander Graham Bell

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        • #5
          how old are you?
          Leave No Trace! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXO1uY0MvmQ
          ThereAndBack http://www.hikesafe.com/

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          • #6
            Orthotics, stiffer-soled footwear, rest, deep tissue massage, muscle strengthening exercises. Any or all of these in various combinations might help. Every case is unique of course and YMMV.

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            • #7
              Thx guys! Sounds like there’s hope for a decent recovery haha. Will talk to podiatrist about PT asap. Orthotics sound like they in my future. Just hoping they don’t affect the fit of my boots. Took long enough to find the right pair after wearing a pair of Vasques for 25yrs haha. Almost 50 myself so I understand recovery not what it used to be.
              Maybe get a night brace for both feet...see what happens. Would like to be able to do 15 miles at least when I desire.
              Thx everyone!
              Chris

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              • #8
                Orthotics may effect your boot fit but a thinner pair/s of socks can fix that. [speaking from experience] .

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                • #9
                  Here is a non-conventional approach to dealing with hikers' musculo-skeletal woes.

                  The best way to hike through an injury is to never tell anyone about it. Especially your spouse. They, or she, will harp on you about it or treat you and your "injury" with a certain deference. This can foster an attitude within you that you are truly ill or injured and maybe you should not be hiking, that maybe you should put your feet up and watch TV, drink beer, eat chips and get fat while your fitness dwindles away to nothing. Ie. Typical illness behavior.

                  I trained hard over 6 months for a hiking project in 2014 when I did the ADK-46 in 10 winter days. All throughout my training I had nagging heel pain (ie. same problem as you - plantar fascitis) but I kept it to myself and learned that by pressing my toes hard into the ground with every step I could abolish the pain. I crushed the project and went on to do others and the pain eventually went away.

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                  • #10
                    Starting to ween off crutches and boot. Regular sneakers a little more each day. Doc says to come back in two weeks to get fitted for orthotics. Hoping things will turn out just right. Not going to rush back into anything...just want to get moving a little more. Thank for all your input. If things head south you'll have to hear me bitch some more haha

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                    • #11
                      Stretch your calves every day and get yourself a tennis ball. Roll your feet over them a few times a day. It may hurt a lot at first, but it will help your feet tremendously. Once the tennis ball fails to provide enough pressure, use a lacrosse ball.

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                      • #12
                        And check your weight. If you need to lose weight, even a little, do it. At 63 years old I tolerate a lot of damage and injuries in my feet, ankles and knees because I'm very light.

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                        • #13
                          TheIndian Your Podiatrist should be the one who determines when you should start PT no? I've had Plantar Fasciatis several times over the past couple of years with slightly different symptoms. The first episodes were back/bottom of heel and then from heel to just into the arch. Very painful. The later episode was from rear/bottom of heel to metatarsals and could barely walk for a week - severe. While a diagnosis is patient/physician dependent of course, in my case it was determined that Achilles Tendonitis (insertional) was a "root cause" along with overly tight calf muscles primarily and hamstrings secondarily. I went through about 12 weeks of PT. One issue PT discovered was a dozen or more "trigger points" in the calf muscles which were extraordinarily/abnormally tight. First month or so there was a lot of massage to remove those - huge help. Ultrasound, E-stim, heat etc. was used on Ach.T. in conjunction with stretching regimens. I do a set series of gastroc stretches now daily along with hamstring/quad. I used "heel elevation" pads initially - but this is really not recommended unless for the most severe cases/injury - and generally only for recovery period. The idea being that you don't want artificially help/mask the problem - you want to get back to "normal" without aids eventually so the musculature is working normally. Again, that is patient/diagnosis dependent. I spent ten days climbing/hiking in the ADKS mid-October this year and had no problems.
                          www.brandtbolding.com

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