Get Gorgeous/ Nails
Kristin Booker • June 4, 2014

At Least My Toes Are Pretty: A Cautionary Tale of Excessive Fitness and Great Pedicures

“Well, at least my toes are pretty,” I heard myself say out loud today as I snapped the above photo. Two things are quite evident in that statement: one, that the polish is, indeed, gorgeous; and two, that I need to slow it down a little.

I’d been complaining for a while that the ball of my foot was hurting, an issue I thought was plantar fasciitis, an issue I’ve struggled with since my teens.  This ball-of-foot-bane-of-my-existence has been an unusual pain, like a constant burning sensation in that region of the foot. Heel and toe pains? You know it’s the shoe. But when it feels like someone’s placed a lighted match in your shoe — and the pain gets progressively worse over three weeks — it’s time to call the question: exactly what the Hell is going on here?

I take full responsibility for my stupidity for letting it get this far. I thought it was the new inserts/supports in my tennis shoes (which cure plantar fasciitis, by the way.) I said maybe my feet were growing (in my 40’s? I KNOW how stupid that sounds.) Yet, I continued to try and work out on it while icing it every single night. The pain started to wake me up out of a sound sleep last week, every step was akin to sending a knife through my foot.

Which brings us to today, and a complete change in plans. I attended a Sally Hansen manicure/pedicure event this morning at tenoverten salon here in New York (love that place, the polish jobs are practically bulletproof,) and by the time I walked from the subway to the event, I could barely walk. The lovely woman who did my nails looked at me as I gingerly dipped my left foot into the warm, relaxing waters.

Currently comforted by my awesome Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure polish job in Please Sea Me (l, on toes) and Commander in Chic (r, on fingers)

Currently comforted by my awesome Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure polish job in Please Sea Me (l, on toes) and Commander in Chic (r, on fingers)

“Add more soothing salt, and just change the polish on that foot. Maybe scrub the heel, but no pressure,” I said, pleadingly.

Which is exactly what she did, and the result is gorgeous. Sally Hansen Complete Manicure (you know the polish: base, nail strengthener, color, growth treatment, and top coat all in one product with beautiful hues that last forever) in #530 Please Sea Me is adorning my feet as we speak. I was canceling appointments for the day as she was working. I had a feeling I knew what this was, and it wasn’t pretty.

The minute she was done with my hands (another Complete Salon Manicure polish color, #290 Commander in Chic, a mauve-ish grey hue that’s deeper than nude but not as obvious as, say, my beloved wine and black polishes,) I was on my way to an urgent care facility. The doctor met me in the examining room with a greeting, a “What seems to be the problem?” and a “Nice polish” before he started the exam.

It’s official/my gut instinct today was right: I have reactivated two hairline fractures in my tarsals, an injury from my 20’s when I was addicted to step aerobics. Two classes a day three days a week caused me to hobble around on crutches then, and it seems like every decade, it makes its presence known.

Come to think of it, it’s literally every ten years this damned injury returns: it happened when I was 23, it resurfaced at 33 due to a failed attempt at race running in 2004, and now it’s back like Backstreet five days before I turn 43. And damned if jogging didn’t bring it back again this time.

So, two things.

One, the polishes are amazing. You don’t need professional application to get stellar results. Get them at Target or Ulta, but definitely get them.

The other? Don’t work out through an OBVIOUS injury. Get it checked out so you don’t get sidelined. Oy vey.

Oh well. Maybe I’ll stick candles between my toes for my birthday. At least they’ll be pretty.

(Related: Consult a physio in Alexandria to get relief from sprains and such other injuries)


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