First it had to be a footpath. Then it was grass. Finally even the treadmill made my foot hurt. Perhaps the last straw was the humiliation of not being able to keep up with my non-running son on a five minute jog to the local health club.
There was nothing for it. Another visit to the foot surgeon – exactly one year since my last operation for a hammer toe.
Hope at last. A whole new world opens up before me. One of toe separators, metatarsal pads and toe physio. But not so fast – the surgeon is also insisting on some x-rays and an MRI scan. A whole week of suspense as I eagerly await the news that – with a few minor adjustments - I will be able to run unencumbered once more.
It was the surgeon’s furrowed brow that gave the game away. The big toe – which plays a critical role in foot propulsion – is effectively asleep. The second toe is completely dislocated. So I’m really running off one foot, with the other one a mere support to stop me keeling over.
So, it’s back to the surgeon’s knife and at least 6 months off running. I plan to develop arms like Popeye and rival Missy Franklin in the pool. Well, that’s the plan anyway.
By the way, if I’m running a 25 minute 5K off one foot does it mean that I’ll be able to do 12:30 when two feet are working properly? Eat your heart out, Mo Farah!