I feel like every time that I write one of these posts, I completely change my mind about something or the other. One minute I’m like RUNALLTHETHINGS the next SCRATCHTHAT then YAYAGAIN then ahahahahahaNO. Oh, the life of a runner, and one with a tiny body and an inflammatory disease, to boot. I often forget about those things. Ie: your body ain’t invincible, chile.
I’m going to split this post up into a few parts: a) long winded explanation of what my PT and I found (I am seeing her today (Saturday) as well, and if there are any relevant changes, I will come back and update, or just wait until Monday), b) short term plans/changes, and c) long term plans/changes.
PART A (and Caitlin, you already know the majority of this, feel free to sccrrrooollll)
As I talked about last week, I have needed PT before for a fibula alignment issue, which then turned into a HOLYCRAP HOW ARE EVER EVEN ABLE TO FUNCTION + IT Band trouble while training for my marathon last year. My PT Missy (who, I swear to god, is made of magic, and also one of my most favorite people ever) kept me together, and I was able to complete my marathon and run the whole thing. Also, I should mention that I strained/partially tore something in my right SI area/pelvis in summer 2012. That contributes to the tightness, as does the fact that I now live in a place without hills, I no longer ride horses, and therefore my glutes don’t fire.
Last week, I started back at yoga—fusion of bikram and ashtanga. The whole time I was practicing, I could feel how tight my backside (basically from the Sacrum area at my lower back/top of my pelvis, through my hammies and down to the arches of my feet). Generally, it would loosen up a bit (the heat of the room helped), but I never really felt it fully release. Thursday, I ran after yoga (hoping that everything would be nice and looseygoosey, and all was well.
On Saturday, I planned to go to a class later in the day, but wanted to run, so I really stretched out, did my releases, rolled, and used the lacrosse ball. Then got on the TM and ran at a fairly easy pace. About 4.5 in, I felt a shooting pain in my hammy, and though I finished, I knew something was off.
I stretched, iced, rolled, and I went to yoga later to see if I could stretch it out. The next day, boom–dull pain in my ham. Continued to stretch, ice, compress, roll. After freaking out (thanks internet) I made my PT appointment (I have precious few, and they are for a different issue, but Missy (my girl) is going to try to finagle that) and went in on Tuesday.
We think that the slight pain I had in my tib/fib a few weeks ago (which caused me to make the appointment with the Phys Med doc in the first place, as this was the injury that sidelined me last year) was more shock/stress reaction resulting from a tight navicular (a bone in the ankle that helps to absorb shock. My navicular was stiff and unmoving, thus not doing its job and sending those tremors straight up my leg to the junction of my fib/tib/knee). We need to stop that before it becomes a stress fracture. I told her that I thought it was also the result of just this overwhelming tightness throughout the entirety of my rear lower body, from the top of pelvis and the sacrum through to my toes (ultimately we agreed with this).
When the acute injury occurred on Saturday, I had been noticing a lack of engagement in my glutes, and had been trying to get them to wake up the entire run. They just were not even attempting to fire, no matter what I did, and so my hamstrings, literally held in tight tension between my tight calves and a rock hard hold in my glutes, just cried out for mercy.
HOLY BALLS when Missy worked to release my Sciatic nerve (booty) it was OMFFFFFFG painful. And I have a very high pain threshold. But Tuesday, after she got that and my calf (all on the left side) to release (for the most part), it literally didn’t hurt. My glutes hurt way more, from her releasing them.
In the days since, I have been at work on the spin bike, doing PT exercises to strengthen and increase mobility in the muscles supporting my knee and my ankles. I am under firm instruction (possibly even pain of death) not to run until it is healed. So much for C’s and my grand Pittsburgh tour…. In terms of how it is feeling, it feels totally fine when I have it wrapped in a bandage. No pain when I’m on the bike. Squats and such seem fine. It is the getting in and out of chairs, curling, and hip-bridge-type positions and motions, as well as forward bends, that exacerbate it. So obviously, those are out. Walking seems to be fine.
Thus is the plan: In Pittsburgh, Caitlin and I already have a Morning Flow yoga and brunch date planned out, and as walking is fine, we are still going to conquer those streets and eat ice cream like it is going out of style (HAH never).
Once I return from Pittsburgh, I will probably continue to rest another week or two and then will rejoin yoga to take advantage of my Groupon.
I will not be running the Atlanta Half Marathon March 23rd. I will however, either drop down to a shorter component of the race and jog it (if there is absolutely no pain) or I will act as pacer for my mom who is walking it and bask in the glory of our city and chat our heads off like ninnies. I am ok with this.
PART III (yeah, leaving the letters behind)
I will regroup, and body willing, will return to the running race stage for the CARA Merit Bank Lakefront 10 miler April 17th. My mom has decided to sign up for the Chicago 13.1 June 7th (the race I PR’d following my honeymoon last year). Though I wasn’t planning on doing that, I will use that race as my half mary tester, and besides, that is a big Team Challenge race, and all of my faves will be there. It will also help to gauge where I am for a fall marathon.
Now, the fall marathon. Chicago Marathon lottery opens next week, and I will enter it, and let fate be what it is. I am actually thinking about turning away from the Chicago Marathon and going after the St. Paul-Minn Twin Cities Marathon, which is the first weekend of October, gets rave reviews, and would be a cool change of scenery and chance to see some friends.
Of course, I might continue to get micro injuries and have to give up running in favor of shuffleboard. Or I will get like Zoe and take up Parkor (free jumping). Because apparently that is a good idea, and she has a GREAT time entertaining herself by catapulting (lolz) herself off the furniture and walls of our apartment. Can I still be a SwirlGear Ambassador if this happens??
Who is to say, really? All I know is that I will continue to give it all that I’ve got, but I have to take care of this body of mine. It is finicky, and it certainly would have qualified as a lemon were it a car, but it’s the only one I’ve got, and last I checked, I can’t take it back or trade it in.
How did the last time you were forced to change your plans help you to discover new and better things about yourself and your body?
One is one random sport that you are either completely talented at or totally worthless at?
I cannot ice skate TO SAVE MY LIFE. No. Joke. I also have absolutely zero vertical leap capacity (Parkor may not be for me, alas). Alex has a 30+ in vertical. I will destroy him.