Broken Toe Running Recovery – Weeks 1 & 2

For some reason, one of the top search terms for this blog of late has been “running with a broken toe.” Are there that many runners out there with broken toes, trying to figure out if they should keep running through the pain?

Allow me to save you further sleuthing: Don’t do it.

Really.  Don’t.

To recap: I broke my middle right toe in September. Ran a half marathon on it two days later.  Took about 6-7 weeks to mend and started back to running. I injured my calf around the holidays and then discovered from subsequent x-rays that the toe had never healed properly (of course, a friend said “why should it heel? It’s a toe!”). The toe was re-broken surgically on March 1st and I am just beginning to resume exercising. Three weeks ago it was the elliptical. The last two weeks I started back to walking, admittedly with a slight limp, while still undergoing physical therapy.

  • Sunday:  1.25 miles @ average pace of 20:21. Ugh!
  • Wednesday:  1.5 miles @ average pace of 19:02.
  • Saturday: 2.0 miles, untimed, but slow!
  • Sunday: 3.0 miles @ average pace of 17:07
  • Tuesday: 3.5 miles @ average pace of 19:30
  • Thursday 2.5 miles @ 16:20, managed 1 mile at 15:22 (toe sore)
  • Saturday 3.0 miles @ average pace of 19:20, after 2 miles on elliptical
  • Sunday 3.1 miles @ average pace of 17:04, 52:50 5K

The plan for Week  3 is to keep walking and try to do at least three walks of three miles each and then attempt another 5K, hopefully a little faster.  I’ll see the doctor this week and am hoping to get cleared to start Couch to 5K as soon as I feel ready.

I’m trying to focus on how far I’ve come and not how far I am from where I want to be. At least I am outside again, exercising, enjoying my tunes and burning some calories.

Happy running marathoners!  And really, stay off those broken toes!

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3 responses to “Broken Toe Running Recovery – Weeks 1 & 2

  1. This does seem to be a popular topic among runners! I broke my toe, two weeks before an Ironman last year and managed to do the marathing comfortably. I guess the healthy lifestyle pays off when the bodies needs to fix itself. I wrote about it here:
    http://www.megamindset.me/a-broken-toe/

    • I suddenly realised that I might have suggested you were unhealthly! 🙂 What I meant was that in my case 2 weeks rest and a healthy diet sped up the toe recovery nicely.

      • Thanks for your comments Steven, and no offense taken! I’m glad your situation worked out well… in my case the doc thinks that it’s possible that my case of “failure to heal” was due to running on it right after the break.

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