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|Subject: ||RE: I had achilles tendon surgery yesterday|
By the time I decided to do have surgery it was pretty much a no-brainer. It was either that or give up competitive running for good. In fact, I don't think I could even do light running for any length of time.
Some background -- I am 46. Ran in HS and a couple of years in college. Was not good enough to compete at a D1 level, gave it up, got a job, we had kids, etc. and barely ran for the next 10-15 years. About 10-12 years ago I started back at it and got into decent shape and started racing somewhat seriously just before I turned 40. At about 40 is when I started having the achilles tendon problems. From 2000-2005 I would have a few months of good running, always nursing a sore heel, interspersed with periods where I could not run. I mostly run easy distance mixed up with fast runs -- sometimes planned and sometimes just when I feel it. Very little interval training/speed work.
In the summer of 2003 I did a few months of 2-3 times per week physical therapy. That strengthened the ankle and surrounding area and I think took some of the pressure off of the tendon. But again after a few months it flared up again. Went through that cycle another time or two. Started training about a year ago hoping to race in 2006 but had problems almost immediately. Went to see a couple of docs, tried a few weeks wearing a boot and doing more physical therapy but did almost no good. So I decided to try ESWT. Did 3 sessions and saw some pretty good improvement. Rested a few weeks, then tarted running a mile a day, went up 5 miles per week total from 5 miles up to a high of 70. Still had some discomfort but it seemed to be improving each week. Then it quickly got worse. For the next 3-4 weeks I would try to run, need to stop, would rest a few days and try again but no success. Sometimes it would be a sharp pain at one of a couple of spots, other times it would be an ache all over the heel area. My pain has always been at and around the insertion -- never up high on the tendon.
So I went back in at the start of December, got another x-ray and talked over tbe surgical option. Given that I had tried just about everything else, and that I am not ready to give up completely, the decision kind of made itself.
Good luck -- hope you can resolve yours without surgery.
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