Bad News: Stress Fracture in My Foot. Good News: I’m Okay With It

foot stress fracture

This is not my foot. But I do have a stress fracture. Credit: Andrew-Hyde

If you’ve been a long-time reader of FBG, you may remember the time I injured my butt, right before I ran my first (and most likely only) marathon. You may also remember me handling said injury not so great. That I felt down about it, sad and kind of just blah. And that it took lots of work and time “looking on the bright side” for me to eventually mentally make peace with it and physically heal. Well, guys, I’m injured again—this time with a tiny stress fracture in my foot. But—and this is a big but—I’m not freaking out about it or letting it get me down.

Seriously! (Oh, FBG, you have taught me so much, yet again.)

At first, I began to notice some weird soreness on the top of my foot, but it only hurt when I moved it a certain way. I thought it was bruised from climbing the rope. But then it lingered. And then it swelled. RUH ROH. A couple days of rest, and it still wasn’t right. So off to the doc I went. Doc confirmed my suspicions. Let me paraphrase his reaction: “You’ve got a metatarsal stress fracture. See it all the time. No high-impact exercise, heavy lifting or extreme toe-flexion for four to six weeks. Ice it.”

Years ago, this would have been brutal news. What about this upcoming event? Or my running? How the freak will I reduce stress—working out is my go-to stress reliever?! WHY ME?!

But this ain’t my first rodeo. Instead of being concerned with short-term losses (events, performance), I’m more hung up on what I can do to be fit and healthy long-term. So I can’t do box jumps for a few weeks? Oh, well. I want to be able to be fit and active for the rest of my life. Not just next week.

With this new perspective (age does make you wiser!), I’ve been much more calm and collected about my injury. I’m modifying as I can and kind of having fun with it. I’ve always disliked the stationary bike, but we’re becoming better friends. And, clearly, my core and upper body have a lot of fun to look forward to.

I’ve also turned to my go-to injury relaxation exercise: meditation. Like Tish, I had been meditating more lately, but now that I’m injured, I’m more committed to a daily (or at least five times a week) practice. I’ve even started doing this Trance State Lite meditation (Remember how we reviewed the full version? There’s a shorter one now!) that mentally takes you through a 15-minute visualization of running—and feeling awesome doing it. Yes, I know I’m not really running, but I am in my mind. And I can only hope that visualizing myself running like a perfectly bio-mechanic-ed bad-ass for six weeks results in it actually coming true. It’s worth a shot; and I enjoy doing it. That’s enough for me!

I’ll keep you updated on my foot-stress-fracture progress—and will share a workout I did pre-injury next week—but tell me: Have you ever calmly handled an injury? What positives did you focus on to get you through? —Jenn

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  1. Deb E says:

    No fun. I had stress fractures in my feet all through high school cross country. Always wanted to run a marathon but sadly, not in the cards for me. Rest does wonders. Glad you’re calm about it. I pray a lot! Seems to help overall!

  2. Cate says:

    I am with ya right now. Two months off running and walking for me. I bought an exercise bike and I have been swimming. I will probably break out the kayak to get outdoors for my activities.
    Hurts more now than it did when I ran on it.

  3. Janet says:

    I have a stress fracture on my left foot now too 🙁 Real bummer I can’t do sprints or jump rope. And yes…meditation has helped a lot to keep me calm …

  4. I broke the 3rd metatarsal bone in my right foot 2 years ago. Renting a knee-scooter helped me keep up with dog walks. It was a great way to keep me out & about and it was a less painful alternative to crutches. Let your foot heal–hope you feel better soon!

  5. rebecca says:

    I see that this was over a year ago, I just ran the Chicago Marathon and found that what I thought was a bruised foot may be a stress fracture….still waiting for MRI results on Tuesday. I’ve had my foot thrown into this ugly large air cast/boot for an undetermined amount of time. Aside from killing the rest of my running season, not sure what things I can do in Crossfit. Any suggestions?

    1. Jenn says:

      What a bummer, Rebecca! Right now, I’d make it all about working that upper body and doing whatever you can for your core. Hope your results are good!!!

      —FBG Jenn