June was another big month with nineteen peaks to climb, and it was off to a good start — until the outer edge of my left foot starting hurting during a speed workout at the track. Taking a week off was demoralizing, and not just because I love to run fast, but also because a serious enough injury (for example, a stress fracture) would threaten the June Grid, the July Grid, and travel plans for August — or in other words, wreak havoc on my summer.
The X-ray came back negative (no stress fracture), instead this was just another unhappy tendon, specifically the peroneal brevis where it attaches to the base of the fifth metatarsal. My sports doc, who’s also in his 50s, gave me a rueful look, commenting that tendinopathies are common with older athletes. Rest, ice, maybe some ibuprofen — focus on strengthening the kinetic chain and maintaining proper alignment — but no magic answers.
The week off was frustrating, and it raised the stakes on finishing the remaining peaks in the June Grid by the end of the month. But by backing off for a few days and then returning to the mountains cautiously, I was able to finish the nineteen peaks and come back with some new discoveries and experiences, which after all is the purpose of this project . . .