Sunday, September 9, 2012

Injury Update

Yesterday I ran for the first time in 23 days.  I ran for 28:11 with my training partner Kevin Gray.  Thanks Kevin, for humoring me.  Leading into the run, I was feeling like my body was ready.  I could still feel some discomfort in my lower left ab and groin, but it was a different type of feeling, one that was telling me I was ready to try a jog.

In the first few steps, the discomfort felt exactly how it did 23 days ago.  Same place.  Same intensity.  So why did I take 3 weeks off as the doctor recommended?  Those were my first thoughts.  As this short run progressed, however, the discomfort started to move around a bit--more into my upper thigh/groin--and got more tolerable.  I'm writing this the morning after that run, and it's sore now, but it's the time of soreness that's telling me I'm getting closer.  Either that or I'm an optimistic clown.

What have I done in the 23 days of non-running?  The first 7: nothing.  The doc said not to do any activity with a repetitive movement.  No running, no biking, no elliptical, no stretching.  She allowed me to foam roll and take ibuprofen (600-800mg 3x a day).  After day 7, I was ordered to physical therapy.  From days 7-14, I did stretching of three muscle groups: hip adductors, hip abductors, and lower abs.  The PT's diagnosis was that my hips were weak/stiff, so that's where I started.  After day 10, the PT gave me strengthening exercises, mainly focusing on the adductors/abductors.  It was still too uncomfortable to do much ab work except for some modified crunches and ab marching.

Both the doc and PT have told me that the only way this injury will recover is through rest.  It remains, unclear, however, how much rest the injury needs.  Doc told me to go two weeks without running.  I did that and then saw her again.  She told me to take another week.  I asked the PT and he told me it takes 6 weeks.

I've been to a total of 4 doctors on this.  Nobody thinks I have a hernia.  An MRI has ruled out a pelvic stress fracture, so it's likely a hip flexor/groin/ab strain.  One doc wants me to get an injection right into the spot of discomfort, but I'm reticent to do that.