Fellowship of the Morton's Toe

Discussion in 'Health, Nutrition, Injuries & Medical Conditions' started by Nyal, Sep 30, 2010.

  1. Barefoot TJ

    Barefoot TJ
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    I guess that would work if

    I guess that would work if you're wearing shoes, but what's cool about Nyal's homemade orthotic is that you can wear it (and run in it) barefoot. The Georgia Chapter President will most likely approve you for membership in the next couple of days. Perhaps we'll meet soon at our next Georgia meetup.
     
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  2. trp

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     ok TJIt's going to be a few

    ok TJ

    It's going to be a few months before I can begin running, in shoes, or barefoot, as I had a microfracture on my medial femoral condyle in November. After 35 years of fairly high mileage running - 60-100 miles per week - I find it very difficult to sit around doing nothing, as I can't put resistance on a stationary bike for a while.
     
  3. Barefoot TJ

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    I'm sorry about that.  How

    I'm sorry about that. How much longer until you can run again?
     
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  4. trp

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    I could run six months after

    I could run six months after the surgery - it takes a while for the new stem cells to solidify - but a new MRI on the other knee shows a smaller 6 mm hole in the left knee. I've set surgery for March 25, but may change my mind if I don't feel any pain on the left. MRI's aren't always predictable; the doctor at the MRI place said he saw the hole, but a horizontal tear in the medial meniscus. My surgeon didn't see the tear, but did see the hole. These things are always upredictable.



    will keep you update.
     
  5. Barefoot TJ

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    That's fascinating medicine. 

    That's fascinating medicine. Maybe barefoot running could be your cure and prevent your having to have your knee operated on. You got to first get healed enough where you can actually run barefoot though. Wish you well.
     
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  6. trp

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    Thanks Barefoot TJ. Will keep

    Thanks Barefoot TJ. Will keep you informed. I don't think the bone-on-bone sports were caused by running, but it's hard to get a definite answer from anyone, including the surgeon.
     
  7. pilotrunner

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    Add one more poor soul on the

    Add one more poor soul on the Morton's Toe list[​IMG]
     

  8. Barefoot TJ

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    Ha!  Welcome, PR!

    Ha! Welcome, PR!
     
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  9. Gkikas

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    Alright, count me in.  I've

    Alright, count me in. I've done the knuckle test and for sure, like Nyal said, I've got some "Morty Toes." *sigh*

    I'd be okay with this if it weren't beginning to be such an issue. Maybe I can simply change my mind about it, turn it into a strength, my weirdly gapped, super-first-metatarsal. I don't know.

    Here's a photo of my feet. Sorry if you've already seen this in another thread, but it's applicable here, and I need some of your advice.

    [​IMG]

    I'm beginning to experience some discomfort between my 2nd and 3rd metatarsals where there's a larger gap than between any of my other toes. It's at the base of the toes where they meet my foot. It isn't horrible, just a bit aggravating. I'm also pretty sure that the more I read about Morton's Toe, the more my right foot hurts. :)

    So there's this... when i roll up onto the ball of my foot (prior to lifting!), my third toe sort of rolls outwards in a slight "buckling" fashion. It rolls outwards, which is what I think contributed to a nice little rubbed-off patch of skin after my (woohoo) second mile-long barefoot run.

    I've seen some of your feet, and some of them are FUNKY compared to mine... MT seems to be something that most of you deal with, and aren't completely sidelined by. Do you alter your form to adjust for these types of things? Do you build up a tolerance to things like these? Is it only because I'm in my third week of BFT? Am I overthinking this?
     
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  10. Nyal

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    Welcome to the Fellowship!

    Welcome to the Fellowship! You are not alone. We are legion, or something.

    Every case of Morty Toe is going to be different for each person. It is part of the deal. Some will never figure it out and others will never have a problem.

    Do you alter your form to adjust for these types of things? I am of the considered, expert, smarty pants opinion that it is always best to run in the most natural way possible. It is very difficult if you start to analyze how you run. This will probobly make things worse. I can, however, give you some suggestions or things to try as you run.

    1. The R and D department has found that the issues that result from MT can be classified into two types: soft tissues issues and structural issues. Soft tissue include the Morton Toe Patches that may form under the 2nd metty head, as well as plantar bruising and capsulitis. Structural refers to the bones and joints proper.



    2. To mitigate soft tissue issues (STI) the following helps: A. Relax your feet. think floppy duck feet. B. Bend the knees. C. Pick up the feet as opposed to rolling back onto the ball. D. Do not run if it hurts, or is tender. E. Wear foot protection of choice to keep the runs fun (do NOT do NOT do NOT push through or endure any run. All runs should be fun). F. Do all of the above without thinking of it. Needs to be natural, without thinking.



    3. Structural issues (SI) are mitigated by increasing mileage slower than an elderly glacier flowing uphill against a wind right after his wife has left him. I am more than a year into the transition and up to 80 percent. You are learning to play the violin here. Takes time. This will enable the bones to slowly thicken and toughen. This takes a long time. It will be easy to fracture the 2nd metty as it was never meant to take the loads. It can, but only after time. Time time time.



    4. R and D has come to conclude that any orthotic is very countreproductive. We have scrapped the whole BF orthotic program. Instead, go slower, rest, and use aquas or sandals to keep the runs fun. Trails are better than asphalt.



    Do you build up a tolerance to things like these?

    See above.

    Is it only because I'm in my third week of BFT?

    Yes and no.

    Am I overthinking this?

    If you ever ask this, the answer is yes.



    Continue with any questions or ideas you have and we will have R and D look into it. BTW, what do you want for your viking name?
     
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  11. Hrefna

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    Hi all,Morton's is a very

    Hi all,

    Morton's is a very recent discovery for me, I think, but it's been buggering up my walking and running my whole life. I believe I have it on both feet, because while the second toes don't really seem longer, (Is that more commen for women?) the first metatarsals seem a bit too short. I can flex my big toes, they don't cause pain, so I'm guessing the comparative shortness of them is the only issue.

    Please see photo link (I'm not sure how to paste it directly into this post) - I have poked and prodded to find the end of my metatarsals and marked them with pen -

    http://usera.ImageCave.com/bufobufo/DSCF4309_morton.JPG

    I've been walking about in Vivo Barefoot shoes for about a year, and run now and then in Fivefinger KSOs, (My feet were so weak and achy at the start - even just in Vivos, so I had to be very careful) but ONE DAY it would be lovely to take them off and finish a 5k without any shoes at all :)

    I'm finding now I'm wearing wider shoes that spread my toes, my 2nd and 3rd toes are separating. My 2nd metatarsals can give me grief sometimes after a run in KSOs - or if I walk more than 3 miles in them. I have calluses under both 2nd mets on both feet, and it's clear I push off from them. My knee has to twist in to get any weight on the big toes, and when I run it's a struggle to stop my feet splaying out like a duck...

    Another photo showing calluses on the sole of foot (Though they aren't as big as they were as I recently got tired of picking skin, and used a pumice on them...!)

    http://usera.ImageCave.com/bufobufo/DSCF4312_morton2.JPG

    I think my brother has a shorter big toe, possible even longer 2nd toes also - because he walks around with his feet turned outwards. He's always run shod, has been running in trainers and recently been complaining of nagging pain in one foot. Doctor couldn't find a fracture, is now looking for gout... (He's only 25...!) I still think there must be a crack in a bone somewhere, hope it's not the 2nd met...

    Anyhow... If I look to have Mortons...let me know. If yea, sign me in as 'Hrefna of Abban.' ;)
     
  12. Barefoot TJ

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    It does look like you have MT

    It does look like you have MT from your first picture (a 2nd metty longer than the 1st metty; not necessarily a longer 2nd toe). Now to find out if that is the true cause of your problems, pain, and callus...

    Are you actually running barefoot at all? More info about what you're experiencing while barefoot, then while shod would be helpful.

    Also, VFFs cause me to have pain in my toes after wearing them just a half an hour, whether I'm walking or running. I think it's unnatural to force the toes apart in that way, and that's exactly what the VFFs do. Yet, many people like them and don't have a problem with them; perhaps it's just those of us who already have a problem with MT that have a hard time with VFFs.
     
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  13. Hrefna

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    Thank you for your reply I'm

    Thank you for your reply :)

    I'm afraid I've not got to barefoot, or run barefoot yet - I know it's the best way to find best form and it is the eventual goal. Maybe not to run miles, just to be able to run safely and strongly for a bit sans footwear, you know? :)

    3 reasons for not trying it yet -

    1. In my neighbourhood I'm actually more concerned about the neighbours raising an eyebrow than about stones/glass. (I live in a semi-rough area)

    2. I had such pathetic feet, flat arches and weak ankles from a lifetime in solid shoes (And no running for a decade) I should think I would have fractured something had I tried running straight off. Wearing Vivo Barefoots as my main shoe these past 12 months have done wonders on strengthening and flexing muscles, and cutting down on major-over-sensitivity on the soles of my feet. I wore them all over winter too (with the exception of 1 week when there was a foot of snow on the ground and had to resort to awful heavy wellies...) I have barely ran in this time - one slow charity 5k and the odd night here and there going for 10 minute jogs in the VFFs.

    3. I live in the UK, and I feel the cold. I know...I'm a wuss. But I am getting better! Slow and sure... ;)

    I love the VFFs, their uniqueness, but I do agree that they are annoyingly restrictive of toes. (I'm a fidgeter!) When I wear my KSOs - which are supposed to be the thinnest soles(?) there's still quite a lot of resistance when I try to curl my toes down. I find after 3 or 4 hours walking around wearing KSOs the toes start to lock up from not moving much and get sore, and cold! And of course - on a couple of occasions I've had soreness under the 2nd Met. One time was after a 15 minute run - I felt something jar, and it was like a bruise the next morning - if I touched it lightly it would twinge painfully, if I applied a bit more pressure the pain dulled. It hurt when I walked. This went away after about a week of not running.

    I always have ran pain free in my Vivos, (attempted the 5k in them) but then they have a 3mm footbed + 3mm insole and tons of room in the toebox. When I examine the footbed inside now the 2nd and 3rd mets have made the deepest indents. One difference between my left and right foot - my left first met has actually eroded away the insole - whereas the insole under the 1st met on the other side is undamaged. Any ideas? When I walk, the outer mid edge of my foot touches down first, weight then rolling onto the 4th and 5th, then I'm pushing off with my 3rd and 2nd. I hardly feel my big toe do anything. If I try to carry my foot further and put pressure on my first met my knee twinges.

    When I run I try and run on mid foot, 'barefoot style' as recommended - my shoes makes a tap on the ground - no scuffing or thudding. If I sprint however, onlookers have told me my feet splay outwards.



    If I walk barefoot indoors on a flat surface (wood flooring) my 2nd and 3rd mets feel like they are raised bumps on my feet - it's uncomfortable. I guess the question is, if walking causes twinges, would I be able to barefoot run pain free? :puzzled:

    Not sure if this description is enough to help, but thank you :)
     
  14. evadenyaw

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    ...i just found out i have a

    ...i just found out i have a lengthened 2nd metatarsal, i.e., Morton's Toe. A friend pointed this out to me - i'd never considered it before. been running in VFFs or BF for just under 2 years more of less w/out incident or injury until I incurred moderate Achilles pain a couple of weeks ago. I have dialed the running waaaay back & am working on strengthening my calves / ankles. Now it hurts just at the base (calcaneus). Only the left foot.

    Maybe the Morton's Toe is part of the problem, but i have a few other phyisiognomical oddities (bum left ankle, leg length difference, scoliosis / spinal stenosis) that probably contribute just as much. I also noticed at the same time, that i tend to walk a bit like a duck, with my heels sort of leading & my forefoot out to the side a bit. There's a term for this... Anyway, I think i'd been running like this as well & now I am consciously trying to walk with my toes pointed forward. It definitely makes my Achilles feel better... I am hoping this will translate into my running, when i return to it (only doing 3 to 5 miles / week now).

    Anyway, just thought i'd throw my hat into this particular ring!
     
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  15. Barefoot TJ

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    I say don't worry about what

    I say don't worry about what the neighbors think. They will get used to you, and you will get used to them. People who know me, know that this is the only "odd ball" thing I do. I am normal in all other aspects (at least I like to think so). Other than that, find a place where you can run barefoot, a hard, flat, clean surface to practice on. Drive there if you have to. Try 1/4 mile at first and progress from there, perhaps 10% distance per week.

    If you have a year in minimalist shoes, and you feel your feet and ankles are stronger, as you stated, then now is the time to make your feet and ankles even stronger. If you don't give your own two feet a try, at this rate, it could take you a lot longer to shed the shoes, if that's your goal. And I would think if running pain-free is your goal, then you will need to find out if shedding the shoes gets rid of the pain. Many of us MTs can't run in footwear (some can). I run more easily barefoot than I can walk barefoot. It has to do with the fact that I am over my center of gravity and lifting my feet versus walking behind my COG and heelstriking (which is normal for many people who walk shod or barefoot to do).

    Did you check both feet for MT? It seems like from what you describe that with the left foot, you don't have the problem of rolling off onto the 2nd metty as most of us MTers do with your left foot, although the picture shows MT and a callus there (under 2nd metty, ball of foot). You may be favoring one foot more than the other. With your spine problems, this might be why. Most of us MTers, lift off from our 2nd metties more than from the 1st, therefore causing the weaker toe to take the brunt of the weight and force (although with running barefoot, we tend to run with little force at all).

    The thing about finding out if barefoot running will help you is you have to actually try it to find out for sure. It may be that you can't run barefoot, even a short 1/4 mile; it may be that you find you have no pain. You will only know for sure by running barefoot.

    Give it 1/4 mile barefoot, and let us know what you experience. Carry a pair of minimalist shoes with you.

    BTW, a pair of water shoes from www.SwimOutlet.com or Walmart are the same thing as Vibram FiveFingers, just without the toe compartments.
     
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  16. Barefoot Brown

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    Pretty darn sure I have MT as

    Pretty darn sure I have MT as well. 2nd metty is slightly longer than the first. Here is something interesting though, and I still have NO IDEA what the hell it is!! I either don't have a joint in my big toe, or the joint in my big toe is fused. Anybody here of that??? I have tried to find an answer on the internet, but just gave up. I'm still quite the newbie, so I'm not sure how it's going to affect me. I've had some blisters on the balls of my feet, but pretty sure that was due to doing TMTS.

    Ohh... and another thing that has been bugging me. Pretty sure I have a corn on the ball of my left foot, just below the 4th metatarsal. From what I've researched, I'm pretty sure that's what it is. Any ideas on what to do about that?

    Any please...If someone can tell me what is wrong with my big toe, that would be freaking awesome! Still have yet to find another with the same issue. Please don't tell me I'm the only one!
     
  17. Hrefna

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    @ Barefoot Brown - this link

    @ Barefoot Brown - this link seems pretty detailed -

    http://ptjournalonline.net/content/79/9/854.full

    Quote from this site:

    "Comparison with the patient's other side and with a large number of patients helps the examiner get a sense of what is normal and abnormal. With the ankle in a neutral position, a dorsiflexion stress applied beneath the first metatarsal head normally will bring the inferior aspect of the first metatarsal to the sagittal-plane level of the lesser metatarsal heads. If the inferior aspect of the first metatarsal head does not reach the plane of the lesser metatarsals, the first ray may be classified as stiff. Conversely, if the inferior aspect of the first metatarsal head rises above the plane of the lesser metatarsals, the first ray may be classified as hypermobile."

    Some technical words that might help with your search - look for "stiff first ray"

    (If it's frozen higher than your other Mets there'll be no callus on your first Metatarsal ball on that foot, if it's frozen lower you'll likely have a heavy callus on it.)

    In contrast to you I think my big toe bones are simply short, (perhaps hypermobile too) they move up and down and I can flex them, but they can't bear much weight simply because their Metatarsals are shorter, so the other mets take the strain. I have a big callus underneath both my 2nd Mets, and lesser ones on my 3rd, 4th and 5th Mets. Theres a little bit of tough skin under my First Metatarsals, but no calluses whatsoever. My feet appear to have a low arch when picked up and examined and when I pull my toes up, but when I stand on it the arch falls very low indeed (Presumably because the arch muscle connected to my big toe doesn't get much weight bearing or action!

    Link to diagram showing all foot bones - note big toe first met length in an (apparently) average foot - http://media-2.web.britannica.com/eb-media/07/99107-004-B9666996.jpg

    I'm no expert because I have a different issue, but I hope this makes it clearer for you to suss out what you have! My guess how it affects your running would depend how long your 1st met joint is in relation to your 2nd met joint, and then at what height and how stiffly it has fused....
     
  18. Barefoot Brown

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    And this is only part of the

    And this is only part of the reason that I absolutely love this forum! Thank you so much for finding such in-depth information. I can't wait to delve into the website you provided, and further look into what I have been questioning for a long time. Thanks again Hrefna! I really hope this doesn't have a large impact on my future in barefoot running or I will be very sad.
     
  19. Peanut

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    Just started having trouble

    Just started having trouble with my really long Mortimer on my left foot. I was running along fine and all of a sudden I had sharp pain at the base of Morty!!! As soon as I curled my toes under the pain stopped and I ran like that.

    When I let my toes relax and my foot went over a bit of a bump the base of Morty let out another scream again. So as long as I finished the run being aware of keeping the large toe and my long Mortimer slightly curled I was ok. I t feels fine now. Go figure!
     
  20. Gkikas

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    I never submitted my Viking

    I never submitted my Viking name. I know, I know... for shame... and I've lived with these fantastically Morton-enabled feet of mine for two whole BFR months and learned to (kind of) love them.

    I am opting for: "Gkikas the Galloping Greek"
     
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