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I am Not Injured

May 14, 2009

No, really, say it with me: I am not injured.

At least, I don’t think so. All the same, since I’m not in the middle of training, I’m kinda-sorta taking it easy. On Monday I didn’t get up early to run, so I ran on the treadmill. My right leg had already started bothering me–I had twinges from my hip all the way to my knee–I’m afraid to say out loud what that sounds like.

I thought maybe it was because of the speed of the long run with Little G; in fact, I’d purposely planned not to run with her because we do run so fast together. But when I ran into her I was genuinely glad to see her–I was stressed out over some things going on and needed a wise, Christ-centered woman to talk things over with, so I saw this as God smiling down on me.

Alas, driving the Boss’s stick shift, which I had for part of the weekend, was decidedly difficult with the twingy leg. Monday’s hill work may have made the leg even more twingy, and that evening’s yoga session, which worked our hips and hamstrings especially, probably exacerbated things.

And what did I do on Tuesday? Anybody? Anybody?

That’s right–speedwork. Half-mile intervals at 7:39 average, with quarter-mile recoveries. Yep. Still twingy. Iced the hip that night.

Did not get up to run yesterday. Sleepy, plus it was a Bible study morning and I had tons to do.

What’s that you say? Did I take the day off like a good, not-in-training, maybe-injured runner would do? Come now, that would make altogether too much sense.

No, I put 4 on the treadmill.

Today, I slept in–long story, but it’s something about how the Lamb has been coughing a lot* and I changed the settings on my alarm clock and forgot to change them back–but the Boss encouraged me to get out anyway as it’s the only time I spend by myself all day. Did I go for a nice, leisurely walk like a good, not-in-training, maybe-injured runner should?

Actually, yes I did. For about a half-mile. Then I put in an easy four.

The leg actually felt better after I got into some kind of running rhythm, and doesn’t hurt now–thank goodness I have my automatic-drive minivan back. I might ice it again just for icing’s sake, but as I sit here typing, it doesn’t, actually, hurt.

So, will I take the day off tomorrow, like a good, not-in-training, maybe-injured runner should?

I have a 5k race on Memorial Day. Come now.

*We noticed it for the first time two weekends ago; I may have even posted about it here. She had a cough and was really congested, but had no fever. Then the congestion and cough seemed to ease. Then a few days later, the same symptoms returned. It was easy to blame all the symptoms on allergies since she has many and, like I said, she never had a fever**. Earlier this week, she woke us with a hacking cough, so we’ve been putting the humidifier in her room to help her breathe. Dad moved into the spare bed into her room to keep an ear on her (I tell ya, he’s a gem!)  Today, I felt her throat and neck and noticed her lymph nodes were swollen, so off to the doctor we went. The news is that, though it was probably initially allergies, we are looking at the beginning of an upper respiratory infection. She’s also got a slight wheeze, so we’re on an additional allergy medication, an antibiotic, and Albuterol syrup for the wheeze, with the additional recommendation for some more allergy testing, and, perhaps, a peak flow meter reading at her annual checkup since she’s got a family history of asthma. Ah, say it isn’t so!

**Although, I have to say, my kids can have raging infections without their temperatures being raised so much as a tenth of a degree, so I shouldn’t take this as an indicator of wellness.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. run4change permalink
    May 15, 2009 8:05 am

    If you are not injured, maybe taking it easy would make sure you don’t get injured. My right foot hurts on top running up about half way up my shin. It is a tight muscle or tendon or something. I ran two days this week and I know it is a lingering effect from the ultra. I am not running today and maybe not tommorrow. It really is a bummer but I don’t want to mess it up and take two weeks off or more. ANyway, good luck with you “twinge”.

  2. May 15, 2009 1:44 pm

    So, are you thinking it might be hamstring issues? I ask because that’s what I’ve been dealing with for the last 2 weeks. My May mileage is 30 miles when it would normally be sitting at 60+/- by the 15th. If you think it’s hamstring, sounds like you’re noticing it early. I’m not a doctor or a physical therapist, but here’s what my doctor told me to do:

    1. No stretching — not even a little bit. I didn’t ask her to qualify whether it was a ban on stretching that leg or a total ban but I’m basically implementing a total self-ban.

    2. No NSAID’s like Ibuprofen or Advil or whatever. In my case, she said the inflammation is actually helping the healing. No problem, the Ibuprofen wasn’t helping the aching or the pain (while running).

    3. Eccentric exercise for the injured hamstring — after only 12 days of hurt, she could already see some muscle atrophy caused, most likely, by my favouring the hurting leg. I stand in front of a table, bend my left leg (it’s my right hamstrings that are injured), keeping my back straight and my hips up (what does **that** mean?), I bend at my hips just until I feel the tension on my hamstring. Then, I push myself back up with my hands — pushing up from the table and not using my hamstrings to raise myself. Three sets of 20 reps. That really activates the muscles in my foot, ankle and lower leg to keep my balance.

    4. Easy running no longer than the point of awareness. She defined that as keeping the pain and discomfort in my hamstrings to less that 3 on a scale of 1-10. She also said keep it under a 5K (OK, I’ve cheated on that one but only on the distance). I’ve slowed down and to keep from hurting, shortened my stride. I’ve run three days in a row without pain, only a mild discomfort that, at its worst, was no more than 3/10 and generally has been 2. First day was an average pace of 9:50 (3.3 miles); second day was 8:52 mpm (4.0 miles); today was 8:30 mpm (4.4 miles). My normal just-go-out-and-run pace has been 8:00-8:15 mpm. Starting on 30-April until this week (Wednesday), my hamstring was seizing up at about 2.5 miles — pretty sharp, very painful, stopped me cold a couple of times.

    If you’re hurting, do something now rather than risk serious injury in a few days.

  3. the Ringmaster permalink*
    May 15, 2009 3:08 pm

    Bob, I am very thankful for the detailed response. You know, my leg actually felt better after some easy running than after the yoga/speedwork/hill work.

    My running ortho (I mean he’s an orthopedist who runs, not that he does evaluations while he runs–which would be cool too) told me early in our relationship that he’d seen more runners injured from too much stretching than not enough, and he’d rather see me stretching with some walking pre- and post-run than by trying to do traditional stretching, which I was likely to do incorrectly. He’s also dead-set against any NSAIDs, most especially before a run. He says any pain you feel you’re not supposed to mask. I get that.

    Having thought all this through, I really did take today off. Like you both said, no sense ending up more hurt–especially with that race coming up.

    Okay, I’m paying attention to the “eccentric exercise” you mentioned, Bob, and I’m going to take it easy. Better maybe-injured than definitely-on-the-bench.

    And, hey, Bob, I’m thinking of you and hoping you get back to your regular mileage soon. (Seriously? 60 mpw? Yikes!)

  4. May 15, 2009 8:16 pm

    It took me a minute to figure out what you meant by 60 mpw. Got it, now, I think — 60 miles per week. ROTFLOL! NOT! What I meant was that without an injury, I would have run about 60 miles between the 1st and 15th of this month — instead, I’ve done only 30 miles.

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