I want to give a big shout out (And I absolutely despise that term. Ever since I heard a certain national candidate use it frequently in the 2008 election cycle, I've been turned off by it. Personally, I've never used it before this, and probably will never use it again, but somehow it seems appropriate in this context) to Morgantown Running (http://www.morgantownrunning.com/). I have blogged about the hot spots on my right 5th metatarsal for a while now, and they've just been driving me nuts. Different friends have offered differing suggestions as to the cause. Change in shoe size, or swelling feet when they get hot seemed the most logical reason. I actually Googled the problem, and of course became convinced I had a stress fx, but then that didn't make sense because the hot spots (pain) were episodic, associated only with intermediate or long runs on asphalt. Otherwise, I had no symptoms. I've known about Morgantown Running for a while, but have never been there. Some local runners have gone there for gait analysis and/or to have shoes refit, and I had heard good things from them. The staff is so much more than just a bunch of part time shoe sales people. Drue, the guy who helped me, is a collegiate level athletic trainer and is working on his PhD in Kinesiology, in addition to being a Tri-athlete, so clearly, they know what they're talking about.
I've worn Asics Gel Nimbus for years without any problems. Last fall, following the Wine Glass Marathon in upstate NY, I began to experience the hot spots. I took a gear bag full of new shoes, slightly worn shoes, and worn out shoes with me to Morgantown Running. After I explained at length what I thought was going on and the triggers, Drue had me put on my newest shoes. He felt the anterior portion of my 5th metatarsal through my shoe, and exactly where I had been having problems was one of the decorative Asics stripes. Some of the older shoes only had the stripe "painted" on, but the new ones actually have some funky material (plastic?) that makes up the stripe that goes right over the widest part of my foot. Bingo! So Drue suggested a bunion pad over the affected area. I tried it last night, and that may do the trick. I have to fine tune the placement and do a couple of longer runs with the pads to see if they really do work. If so, goodbye Asics and I'll have the folks at Morgantown Running help fit me with another brand of neutral shoe.
Race time is fast approaching and the taper is here. My long run this weekend is only 10 miles followed by 6. Then 4, 3, & 2 next week followed by two days of rest and lots of pasta and rice. :-)
I've done everything I was supposed to do to prepare for this adventure. Now it's just a matter of letting "race day magic" take over, getting in the groove and making the cuts.
The only thing left is to worry about things I cannot control. Weather at the starting line (what kind of clothes to wear and shed), my stupid foot, and anything else I can come up with between now and 0600 on June 16. See you at the finish line!!!
"Yes by God, baby we were Born to Run..."