Don’t have time to stretch?
Think yoga is a bore?
Cooling down is for losers, and rest days just mean your heart rate stays slightly below bulging forehead vein level?
Look after your body, or it will dump you. All those hours you left it out in the cold, those stretches you missed in favour of lying on the floor eating bananas, will catch up with you and you’ll find yourself in a lot of pain.
Last Monday I went out for my usual 10km run, and my groin hurt the whole time. I’m not great with anatomy, so I surmised that my pelvis/ hips/ womb were all under some sort of immense stress and I should stop running immediately and get straight on the Google to find out what was wrong.
As I researched ‘Pelvis pain’ a whole heap of related links popped up in my side bar with what were surely reputable and peer reviewed scientific articles such as ‘Ten signs you definitely have cancer’. My google diagnosis revealed a possible tendonitis, a groin strain, fractured pelvis, prolapsed uterus, arthritis, pregnancy, ostetitis pubis, and a hernia.
I thought I should also seek the opinion of a qualified off-line human, and went along to the physiotherapist. Kieran the physio played origami with my legs and concluded that I had strained my groin.
‘How did you do it?’ asked Kieran
‘I was running down Mount Victoria, and I felt a wee niggle in my pelvis area’
‘What did you do then?’
‘I ran for another two hours. (Sees Kieran’s facial expression and tries to change the story) I did cut my run short by at least 5km.’
‘Ok, that perhaps wasn’t the best idea to keep running. Why do you run so much?’
‘WHY DO YOU PHYSIO SO MUCH! What kind of question is that?’
I left with a sore everything, and a prescription of three days of rest with absolutely no running. Convinced that this meant the end of my running career, and that Kieran had in fact mis-diagnosed a broken femur and gangrene, I went home to sulk.
What to do when you feel an injury coming on
- Run through it and finish your workout, neglect to stretch at all (as always) then record your run on Garmin, Strava etc
- While sitting at your desk post run analysing your Garmin data, google whatever ailment you have
- Pick the worst possible diagnosis with the longest recovery time, you have that.
- Use your thesaurus and a Game of Thrones novel to find grotesque ways to describe the pain so that others can know what you are going through
- Since you will never be able to run again, pick a new sport, one that someone once said you could be good at. I picked Pole dancing. – It’s best if a drunk person said you were good at it.
- Google pain treatments, with your broken femur and possible amputation you will need them
- Sit at home alone (too painful to go outside to socialise) and swing between crying with self pity, and frowning with anger looking at Facebook updates of other people running
- Watch pole dancing videos while googling how to make ‘Cannabutter’ to ease your pain with magic brownies.
I’ve been very relaxed this past week, no running at all! I’ve opted for the spin bike for some cardio, and I’ve joined a really cool little yoga studio (Hot Yoga Wellington) so that I can give my muscles a well overdue stretch. Their teachers are fantastic, and I enjoy being the sweatiest and least flexible person in the room.
I’ve also been to get a deep tissue massage, these hurt a lot. In my opinion I am pretty fearless, deep tissue shmeep tissue. I pick up spiders from my room and take them outside, I wear shorts on a cold day, I don’t measure the sugar when I bake cookies, I’m a badass. The most afraid I have felt in a long time is when being massaged with deep heat in the groin area. The burning balm was about half a centimetre from my sensitive parts, it was like being separated from a river of boiling lava by a hedge, that had been recently trimmed. ‘Be careful when you go to the bathroom and wipe’ said the masseuse. Lucky she did, because I usually wipe the paper up the length of my entire thigh then right around halfway up my back, not that day though!
Iv’e had an X-ray, which revealed nothing. I ran 2kms and felt like my pelvis was going to snap like a Kit Kat down the middle. A week later I can run for two minutes on the treadmill at a 6.30 pace without too much pain. Two. Minutes. It’s a bit annoying not being 100% sure on what is wrong and missing all the time spent outside in the sun, wind and rain running in the fresh air. In a week I will probably be running again, but just in case I’m not, I’ve started to research in to the cost of installing a pole in my living room.
How to recover from an injury
- Have a positive outlook, treat your body like it needs serious healing, but think as if you’ll be back to 100% in a week
- Don’t do the things that hurt, even if they are fun, don’t do them!
- Extend the truth about the extent of the hurt and demand that you need to be driven everywhere as you cannot possibly walk
- Be kind to your body, feed it yoga, ice cream, and inspirational quotes from Pinterest, and learn to love time with the foam roller
- Point to the injury to direct where the sympathy must go, especially if it is very close to your genitals.
- Realise you can still walk, and still have fully functioning legs, and just focus on what you can do!
Watch this space for my triumphant return to running/ debut as a pole dancer.