Our expert says:
My condolences, that's a fairly common and stubborn injury to get, so I can appreciate your frustration. The key, and I know you won't want to hear this, is to take it very easy when you start again. The stress fracture was caused by excessive load for a long period, and if you go back in and don't take care, you'll just relapse, so you really need to keep the foot on the brake AND the handbrake up on this one!
I think barefoot walking is good, and I'd even suggest that you try to do some running barefoot. But here, we're talking VERY VERY SHORT durations. What I'd do is do a normal run session, and then take the shoes off for the last ONE minute and run home barefoot. One week later, up it to TWO minutes, then three minutes in week three, and so on. This will help to strengthen the foot. I'm not sure how I feel about supporting soles - I just think that the foot gets weak because we over-support it to begin with, and I would rather you spend some time getting stronger.
In terms of the running, it's really vital that you go right back to first principles. Don't go run 5km on day 1. Rather run 10 minutes. Or better yet, run 5 minutes, walk 2 minutes, run 5 minutes.. And do that for a week. It'll be very frustrating, but it's important. In week 2, increase by a small amount, and so forth. But you just have to hold yourself back the whole time, I think accept now that it's going to take you 2 to 3 months to work back to running say 45 minutes nonstop. Once there, then you should have overcome it, and can start ramping it up as you work on that time. But until then, slowly, slowly...
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