I met with a podiatrist yesterday and had an x-ray to see if I had any stress fractures in the metatarsal bones in my foot. The good news is that there were no stress fractures. The podiatrist seemed to think that I have tendonitis in the tendons that connect to the metatarsal bones in my foot. Mostly because there were no signs of stress fractures, but also because when I run the pain seems to subside after 1-2 miles. This is most likely because the strain on the tendons is reduced as they "warm up" and become more elastic. The great news is that he didn't see a problem with me continuing to run slow and short distances as long as I don't experience pain so strong that it causes me to alter my stride. He recommended wrapping/taping my forefoot to give the metatarsal bones some added support, and releasing some of the tension on the tendons. He also recommended only running in traditional, neutral running shoes while my foot heals. Of course he gave the usual RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevate) recommendation as well as over-the-counter anti-inflammatories/ibuprofen as needed.
Since the appointment I've been wrapping my forefoot with an elastic bandage and wearing my old-school Mizuno running shoes which I wore for the 2009 Seattle Marathon. Wrapping my foot has helped far more than anything else. Walking I hardly feel any pain at all, and running is much more tolerable with the wrap. I'm icing my foot in the morning and evening for 20 minutes, and I'm also looking into getting an insert to provide some extra forefoot cushion to see if that helps as well. The podiatrist recommended giving it 2-4 weeks to heal, and if there is no considerable improvement than I should have an MRI to definitively rule out stress fractures.
I did a slow 2-mile run yesterday after my appointment with the podiatrist, and it actually felt pretty good using his suggestions. My foot was a bit sore this morning, but after icing it, wrapping it, and putting on my Mizuno's I hardly feel the pain anymore. I'll continue to do 2-mile runs every other day until it either gets better or worse :-P I really hope not the latter.