Feb 24, 2014

Finally, I now know why my heel has been so painful over the past three months. The results of the ultrasound have shown there is a 16 mm longitudinal tear in my Achilles tendon where it attaches to the heel. The tear is 4 mm wide. It shows up very clearly on the images as a large dark gap in the fibres of my Achilles tendon.

That’s the good news. The bad news is it requires non-trivial treatment. Ideally I would be wearing a special boot for eight weeks to immobilize the area against any unconscious or unintentional exertion that might set back the healing process. I can still do a little minimal running, but only with special protection and under certain conditions, so as to guard against aggravating the injury. I will keep any such running to a maximum of one kilometre per day, and very slowly. The rest of the time I’ll wear the boot.

I also will be undergoing intensive physiotherapy, and I’m quietly confident that I’ll be over the problem in well under the standard eight weeks. I’m not used to this sort of thing, so it will be an interesting experience. It’s not clear what caused the tear, which happened about ten weeks after I finished my run around the world.

It’s my birthday today, and Carmel put together a special book for the occasion. It’s a glossy full colour hard copy, but you can actually view the book by clicking on the link  below. Hard copies are too expensive to have printed for the general public, but if anyone knows a publisher who might like to take on this task, please let me know. Just click on the image of the book itself and the page will turn. Keeping clicking on each page to turn to the next page.


To finish, this day last year I ran through the French countryside from Salies de Bearn to Pau, where it began to snow. Two years ago I was running in California, from Solvang to Santa Barbara. This is my first birthday at home since 2011.