Thursday, March 25, 2010

All the World’s a Stage

It seems like all I have been doing lately is focusing on how difficult it has been to run over the past month. While it hasn’t been the best of times, it’s not the worst of times either. Occasionally, it does a world of good to take a few moments give yourself a bit of a reality check when thing seem to be going out of control.

One of the benefits of running with a group is the camaraderie of like minded individuals. I didn’t realize how much I needed the support until this past week. Of course we banter, and joke, and generally just get foolish at times, that’s what friends do. We’ve also got each other’s backs. We’re supportive.

Alyssa Tower wrote about the five stages of runner’s injury in her blog. I understand where she’s coming from.

1. Denial and Isolation: I’m not injured, just sore. It’s not affecting my running.

2. Anger: Why isn’t this getting better? What’s wrong with my body?

3. Bargaining: I’ll rest a day or two.

4. Depression: I’m going to miss another race

5. Acceptance: I need help.

Goals are important to most runners. We have PR’s, there are races where we want to compete or races where you need to qualify. There are even some Goofy Challenges.

I’ve been the beneficiary of a wonderful piece of advice. Utilize your support resources. When you have people in a position to help you, accept the help. It certainly gets you past stage one and much closer to stage five. I'm so very appreciative of the support and advice that I've received from my fellow runners.

Even Alyssa responded to the comment I left, “Be proactive”. More great advice.

I’m activating all my resources, relying on my support network, getting professional diagnosis from knowledgeable sources.

I’m hanging a beating on this aging body. Little things can easily become big things if left too long. Small underutilized muscles, like the sartorius, piriformis, or popiteus can become an issue when running fatigued or injured.

During yesterday’s chiropractic exam, I discovered I had a sore popiteus muscle. After the initial WTF is a popiteus, Dr Google provided me this insightful analysis of why it could be sore.

“Pressure is placed on the popliteus tendon during such everyday movements as the feet hitting the ground. Running downhill can put an inordinate strain on the tendon if practiced excessively. This occurs more often than in general sprinting because the surface is not flat; other factors that can contribute to straining the tendon include overuse: running with fatigued muscles, for too great a length of time, or without suitable warm ups or other stretches. The injury is regularly felt after an ankle rolls unusually inwards, causing a tear in the tendon.”

Golly Gee Willackers, I wonder if that includes marathon training?

In other news, it seems that I now pronate, not that there is anything wrong with pronation, but this is something new for me.

I definitely have weakness in the left quadriceps, and shockingly, I have tight hips.

Just to add to the kharmic equation, when I got home last night, I performed some cleaning. While straightening up. I had some printouts that I must have forgotten, they didn’t get added to my library of running literature.

Do Weak Hips Cause Pronation?

And these exercises.

Of course like all good running debates there is always a dissenting opinion.

I’ll be back at the chiropractor on Monday and the Sports Medicine Clinic on Tuesday. I’m leaving any further diagnosis and treatment to people with medical degrees before I go insane.

I think that’s acceptable. Have I made it to stage five?

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