“Morton’s neuroma is a thickening of the tissue around one of the nerves leading to your toes. This can cause a sharp, burning pain in the ball of your foot. Your toes also may sting, burn or feel numb.”
I have been dealing with this for the last few weeks receiving Shockwave therapy form my physiotherapist and I think the worst is finally over.
Naturally runners experience all kinds of problems with their feet, for me it seems to be from high intensity training loads. I have crooked toes from growing up with poorly fitted shoes and it hasn’t been a issue for me until this small issue popped up.
I first noticed a slight aggravation in my right foot after a night of high intensity speed work running on a track. Naturally I didn’t think anything of it because I am used to a certain amount of discomfort in my feet that you just learn to live with as a runner. The next morning I woke up and my foot pad was incredibly soar I noticed it immediately walking through the kitchen on a tile floor. The easiest way to describe the feeling is imagine you are talking along and then out of no where someone plucks a nerve in your foot like a guitar string. It was at that moment when shooting pain flew through my foot I knew that I had done something worse than normal to my foot.
Naturally I figured that I could find out what was wrong using the interweb and some common sense. I poked and prodded my foot until I located the exact spot of the pain and sure enough I deduced that most likely I had something called “Morton’s Neuroma“. One advise of caution I have for people google’n is refrain form clicking on the “images” tab unless you have a strong stomach. Now hoping that I was wrong about my self diagnosis I booked a physiotherapy appointment with John Smallwood from the Synergy Centre. John has been a miracle worker with all of my running related injuries in the past and I credit him for helping me cure my IT Band, runners knee and calf strains. He confirmed immediately that I did indeed have Morton’s Neuroma, but was optimistic like always that we would “get it fixed up in no time”. John treats all regions of the body, with a focus on running and running injuries. He uses a one on one hands on approach focusing on muscle imbalance correction and restoration of proper joint mechanics.
I received weekly Shockwave therapy, which is a high-intensity sound wave that interacts with the tissues of the body. “This leads to a cascade of beneficial effects such as neovascularisation ingrowth, reversal of chronic inflammation, stimulation of collagen and dissolution of calcium build-up. Stimulation of these biological mechanisms creates an optimal healing environment. As the injured area is returned to normal, functionality is restored and pain is relieved.” Now after two weeks of therapy I am confident that this will be completely gone by week three. When you are in tune with your body as much as I am you can just tell when things are on the mend. Walking barefoot was just not an option around the house I was wearing running shoes or really thick socks to help give my foot some padding but those days are finally over. This morning I walked down to the kitchen with no pain or discomfort, which is a welcome relief because I hate wearing socks of any kind!!
You may be wondering how this has effected my training load over the past few weeks and to answer that it really hasn’t too much. John is very specific about staying consistent with training and the healing will take place you just have to be patient. The only real consequence from and frustration was how I had to cut my endurance runs time down from 1:10 to 0:45/0:50. After 0:45 minutes my foot would start to ache and it was just too uncomfortable to run on but last week I ran for 0:60 minutes without issue and will increase back to my full 0:70-1:20 runs in the coming weeks.
Having a great physiotherapist is part of my “Athlete Toolkit” if anyone is interested in John’s Physiotherapy practice or wants to try shockwave therapy on a re occurring injury please get in touch with him.