I learnt a few things this week:
1. A neuroma between the first/second toe is not called a Joplin’s neuroma as I said previously; a Joplin’s neuroma is actually on the medial side of the big toe and is very different. Regardless, the consensus seems to be that 1st interspace neuromas are very rare for reasons no one wants to specify, such that other diagnoses are more likely to be correct even when nerve ‘feelings’ are involved (I think because inflammation of other structures can put pressure on nerves).
Whether this is true or not I don’t know, but I’m not too interested in this kind of speculation right now, because, firstly, I’ve had a light week and it feels a bit better (but maybe I’ll change my mind this week when I resume my normal walking volume), and secondly…
2. …The second thing I learnt, thanks to filming myself running, is that I have been (over-)pronating much more than I realised.
Barefoot: Right foot is fine, left foot pronates a bit more and might just be into over-pronation territory, but not by much.
Shoes (all of which are neutral): In my Asics and New Balance I’m more stable than barefoot and fairly neutral. In Altras I’m less stable than barefoot and overpronating on both feet noticeably. That’s right, the right foot goes from neutral-ish to overpronation.
I’m very surprised that this is possible, but here’s an interesting and detailed article by someone observing neutral shoes making him overpronate much more than barefoot; his theory is that some shoes absorb force unevenly and your foot will follow the motion of the shoe.
I was running in the Altras (exclusively) for just under six weeks before I noticed these issues, so there is an obvious hypothesis here.
So, OK, I suspected over-pronation from the callousing on my feet, but seeing it in video is useful because it clears up some confusion in my mind over how much stability I want in a running shoe. I have been pushing towards less to try to promote natural mechanics, but at least in this case, what I’ve ended up with is certainly not my natural mechanics.
Current plan: rest for another week, maybe two, then try running again with more supportive shoes. GP appointment if it gets worse during any of this or if after two weeks it doesn’t feel good enough for a test run.