Cortisone Shot: Did It Work?

A lot of friends/followers have been asking how my plantar fasciitis held up during the race after my cortisone shot.  (Back Story HERE) Days leading up to the race, I was still sore.  On race day, when walking to the start line I was still feeling a dull pain.  The kind you get around mile 20 of a marathon.  So my stomach was doing flops.  This wasn't going to be easy!

How did it go?  I believe a picture is worth a thousand words... so here's the answer:
Mile 25
Needless to say, it HURT!  I managed to keep up with the 3:55 pace group with only slight discomfort, until Mile 18. That's when the $&@! hit the fan.  I could feel the tendon in my foot tight and throbbing something major.  I also knew that with the cortisone shot, I was opening up myself to risk of rupturing the tendon for life.  So I limped/walked the last few miles.  


It definitely was painful.  Not just physical pain, but mental.  Runners were stopping to ask if I was okay... pace groups were passing by that I knew I could keep up with otherwise.  But I bit the bullet, suffered through it, and made sure I crossed that finish line! Stubborn yes.  Borderline idiotic too.  I'm very lucky I didn't hurt myself worse.


Now, on to the question of do I think Cortisone shots work.  Yes, I absolutely think they help.  But I would NOT suggest running a race right after getting one.  Regardless, you MUST rest.  Had this been any other race, or a local run, I would have sat it out.  


Again, I'm lucky I didn't do too much damage to my foot, but I know that I've set myself back a few weeks by deciding to run.  Was it worth it?  I'm glad I finished, and it was one of my most triumphant accomplishments. It may have been my worst finish time, but it was a whole new level of personal mental/physical challenge. 

My suggestion is, if you're thinking of getting a cortisone shot, make sure you are prepared to rest for a few weeks.  There is no immediate relief of the pain.  So if you're looking for a quick fix days before a race, you need to seriously weigh your options.  

I hope my experience can help you decide if you're ever in the same position as me!  Now, the Race Review, the fun stuff, is coming soon! 

If you have any questions about the cortisone shot and my experience with it, comment below and I'll answer! Thanks and Happy Running!



Comments

  1. I feel you...literally...only my issue was the peroneal tendon. I was supposed to do the full. Figured I would have 3 months to finish my prior marathon and ramp up training for sf. Then I got injured and spent 8 weeks rehabbing. I started slowly running again 4 weeks out but tried to get a double digit long run in and apparently I wasn't ready so I dropped back to the half. I didn't limp but I did feel soreness. No cortisone shots for me but i did have one once years back for a metatarsal issue before I was a runner and within 2 weeks I was healed. It was a miracle that time.

    I know that stubbornness that we runners have. Congrats for finishing. Now go rest up. I am now back on the bench for a few more weeks to recover from Sundays toll on my foot. Icing the foot as I type this. Lol.

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    1. It's funny that I don't know many runners that DON'T get injured! Either we're all doing something WRONG, or we're doing something RIGHT! lol. Either way, REST is by far the only real cure... and the cortisone ISN'T a "quick fix". Hope your foot gets better as well. Keep icing!! :)

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  2. Congrats on the race Jeremy! PF is a tough injury. In my experience in treating these injuries by FAR the biggest cause is Training Error. Meaning A) a bump in mileage too quickly or B) too much "speed work" or "hill work". The stress on the soft tissue (plantar fascia, IT band, peroneal tendon, etc) becomes greater than it can handle and it gets injured. The advice I give ALL runners is A) don't ignore early symptoms and B) treating/managing the injury correctly early on can save you weeks or months (sometimes years) of frustration. Let me know if you need some help. Charlie Boeyink PT, OCS

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    1. Thanks Charlie! I'm resting it now and plan on making YOUR strengthening workouts and form corrections a big part of my next training!

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  3. congrats on finishing! this is all good advice and I'm glad you played it safe during the race and didn't push yourself (more). Hoping your foot heals quickly so you can get back at it!

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    1. Thanks Helly!!! Hope to be back at it soon.

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  4. I am toying with the same issue, which brought me to your page. I have had them before and it always feels worse for a couple of days after injection. Then pain starts to subside. I have Chicago marathon in 5 days and am getting a shot in a few hours. Ive been back and forth with getting it, but the pain right now is not tolerable, so Im taking the chance. not an ideal situation to be sure

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    1. I'm sorry to hear that, but we runners know that situation all too well. Cortisone shots have helped me (I've gotten one in the hip now too). But they're never a SOLUTION. Just a temp fix. There's always a root cause that must be addressed too. May I ask where you're hurting?

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