The last couple of months have been a bit rubbish for me running wise. Since the Glen Ogle 33 I seem to have had a non-stop conveyor belt of viruses and tummy bugs and generally feeling like crap - not conducive to doing lots of running. From talking to friends and family it sounds like that is quite common when you have a couple of young kids at school - they're constantly bringing new colds and things back home with them. So I only achieved two of the five targets I had set myself for the last four months of 2012 - doing 30 miles in under 4.5 hours and climbing a 6b at the local wall (I managed two, and fluked my way up a 6c) - so I'm carrying the other three forward.
Over the last few days of the year the big toe joint on my left foot got very swollen and incredibly painful, to the point were I really struggled to walk and it would take 5 minutes or so to walk 100m. I'm currently waiting for the results of x-rays and blood tests but my internet self diagnosis has the most likely culprit as being gout. Seems totally unfair if it is since I'm getting all the pain and suffering but without having had the hedonistic lifestyle that commonly causes the affliction.
I've had a bit of pain and stiffness in the joint for about seven years now but the recent attack of gout or whatever it turns out to be was something else and seems to have knackered the joint good and proper. Some strong NSAIDs have thankfully eased the pain and swelling, but right now I have grave doubts as to whether I'll ever be able to run more than a few miles again without some major intervention. There are lumps and bumps all over the joint that I am pretty certain shouldn't be there, and my big toe doesn't have much mobility anymore.
There are changes you can make to your diet to reduce the risk of gout, which mostly seems to be eating lots of foods that give you tremendous wind, so it isn't all bad.