acupuncture platar fasciitis heel spur

When rest, icing and stretching haven’t worked…when the Strassburg sock, kinesiotaping and leukotaping haven’t worked…when footbeds, orthotics and new shoes haven’t worked…it’s time for acupuncture and blood-letting.

Today, I went back to the Chinese Medicine doctor to address the persistent plantar fasciitis/heel spur in my left foot.  I had done some treatment last fall for similar problems in my right foot. Today’s treatment was pretty intense.  Half a dozen thin acupuncture needles inserted into various meridians in my left knee, calf and ankle.  I barely feel them when they go in.  The needles are manipulated and when they hit the right spot, it feels like a sharp tingle along the nerve path, similar to how it feels when you bang your elbow.  These stay in for an hour and are adjusted every 10 or 15 minutes.

Then there’s the blood-letting.  This is a little tougher.  A lancet needle is used to pierce the skin in several spots.  The lancet feels like a bee sting.  Each time it pierces the skin.  Five or six times on a site.  There were four sites done on my heel and ankle.  A vacuum cup is then used to pull the “dark” blood out.  Dark blood indicates stagnation and injury.  Removing it improves circulation and promotes healing.  It’s only slightly less painful than the injury it’s trying to heal, but it works well on areas that normally don’t get a lot a blood flow.

Continue reading

Dog Days

enervit hot humid

The recent spate of hot, humid weather hit me hard.  Maybe it was the long car ride back from Jersey.  Maybe the morning yard work.  I was definitely on the bad side of good hydration.  An hour into my training ride, I was already starting to heat stroke.  Sure, I could have gone easier, especially after being at the shore all week.  But I couldn’t resist the chance to motorpace behind the cars past Walden Pond and into Concord.  It was only a few minutes effort at 60 km an hour, but it was enough to put me over the edge.  I kept having to remind myself:  it’s two-hour ride at a four-hour pace.  I have this bad habit of trying to squeeze a longer distance into less time.

I went through two full bottles and still it wasn’t enough.  I was feeling sick from the heat and couldn’t eat anything.  I knew I was in trouble when the heavy fatigue wouldn’t pass, even when soft pedaling.  When I exhaled, it was like fire coming from my mouth.

I bounced back for a long rollerski the next day.  I kept a steady stream of fluids going in the night before and all the next morning.  I was topped off for sure because I had to stop for a piss in the first half hour.  Nonetheless, I was still hammered after 2-plus hours of mostly double-poling through the heat.

I spent the rest of the day watching Olypmics coverage from the couch.  It was too hot to do anything else.