Ever badly sprain a toe with a week before a race?

While going on a relaxing run in the woods, at dusk, when visiting my parents I had the pleasure of ramming my foot right into a huge root in mid stride. The result was a sensation like one I haven’t felt in quite some time that left me seeing stars.

My first impression was that I had broken a few toes and my foot in some manner. So I decided that I should run/limp out of the woods and get back before the sun had set. After arriving I surmised that I couldn’t have broken my foot or many toes and that only my big toe was screaming at me.

Now normally this wouldn’t be a problem but I had a Spartan Super in 6 days and the spartan beast in Vermont two weeks after that. Determined to run both of them I set upon immediate icing and some Advil mixed with raising my foot above chest height when I remembered. This was helped along by the immediate decision to not run a single step until the race started that coming Sunday.


Here is the day by day injury report leading up to the race:

Day 1 – Unable to bend or put pressure on the front section of my foot. Debating in my head if I actually may have fractured a digit

Day 2 – Still very painful but I went for a bike ride to get some exercise and have the blood flowing

Day 3 – More rest but I can wiggle my toe in pain which is much more than the day before

Day 4 – Decided to go for a light long row on my water rower. Almost a pain free idea but I’m still limping around most of the day.

Day 5 – Rest and recovery continues while hoping I’m not losing my edge for race day. I’ve managed to slowly and somewhat painfully move my toe up and down for most of the full range of motion.

Day 6 – Day before the race and I can officially limp at a good pace. I feel ready and excited to run my first Spartan Super race.

Day 7 – Race day! Feels good in loose running shoes when I gently jog. After running the initial uphill while full of Advil things feel like they are loosening up and I will be able to finish the race. See the Tri-State NJ race report for more details.

And who doesn’t love an animated gif (1 photo per day):  toe

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Dario is an obstacle course racer and lover of great coffee. When he isn't writing on this blog he can be found working as a photographer for NYSE, AP, and occasionally Getty Images.
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