• Running & Injuries

    May 5, 2011

    Lately, I’ve been receiving lots of emails and comments about running-related injuries. ‘Tis the (race) season for injuries, right? Or maybe it’s because I’m the poster child for having and recovering from just about every running-related injury out there? I have no idea, but I am happy to help in anyway that I can. I know how much running means to someone who can’t run due to an injury. I lived that nightmare for nearly a year and it sucked.

    Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional of any kind. This post is solely based on my personal experience and opinions. If you have specific injuries questions, please consult your doctor.

    My Injury History

    Growing up, I played soccer, tennis, basketball, and track, but I never got injured. Basically, my body was invincible. I stopped playing team sports when I entered college, so I started running to relieve stress from my rigorous academic schedule. Running became a form of exercise that I could count on, and for the next decade, I ran two to four times every week. Most of my runs were three to four miles and I never ran more than five or six miles at a time.

    In the Spring of 2009, I decided to train for my first half marathon. I found a training program online, started following it, and ran my little heart out. I did a few short runs during the week and a long run on the weekend. I was running between 20–25 miles per week, which was much more than my usual weekly mileage, so it was just a matter of time before I felt pain in my left hip, but I kept running and did not take care of it. It eventually got so bad, I could barely walk on my commute to work without pain. It was horrible.

    I was more than halfway through my training program and the half-marathon was just a few weeks away, so I made an appointment to see my doctor. I was worried that she’d tell me not to run it, but, as a marathoner herself, she said go ahead and do it. She knew physical therapy was in my future, so why not run the race, especially since I had trained for it? So, I ran 13.1 miles, and it hurt a lot, but I finished the race. I don’t regret my decision one bit. I was so proud of myself!

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    After the race, the pain in my hip couldn’t be ignored, and I knew it was finally time to take a step back and stop running. I went to physical therapy twice a week for a few months to help loosen my IT Band and strengthen my hip. We used steroids, massage, and ultrasound to lessen my hip’s inflammation, but, ultimately, PT ended up being a big waste of my time. The pain-relief that I experienced was only temporary, and the treatment never got to the root of my problem, so I stopped going all together. (Maybe I just had a bad Physical Therapist?)

    On and off for the next year, I struggled with not being able to run. It was stressful and frustrating, and staying in shape wasn’t easy at first. Running was my go-to form of exercise for more than a decade, so I knew I needed to find other ways to incorporate exercise into my weekly routine. During this time, I tried all sorts of workouts: spinning, Gravity, yoga, Pilates, elliptical, power walking, and various exercise classes offered at my gym. What I liked most (and seemed to keep me in the best shape) was strength training classes, like Body Pump, because they challenged me, but didn’t strain my hip. I still (obsessively) take Body Pump class today.

    After a few months of changing up my workouts, I was surprised to discover that my physical fitness didn’t wane all that much. Instead, I became much stronger than I expected— and even more toned—which ended up helping me start running again. Slowly, but surely, I started to two or three miles a couple times a week. Even though I was running again, I couldn’t stop thinking about my ultimate goal of running a marathon.

    A few months pasted and an integrative health center called OMBE contacted me about my injury and my goal of running a marathon. (Their PR person read my blog!) I figured I had nothing to lose, so I met with their team.

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    OMBE offers a number of services from acupuncture and  massage to naturopathy and yoga, so, in exchange for blogging about my experience on CNC, they would create an integrated treatment plan to help heal my hip. It sounded good to me— and maybe I’d be able to run a marathon!

    At OMBE, I tried acupuncture, which was really cool and provided temporary pain relief in my hip. (I blogged about my experience here.) I also met with their chiropractor, Erik, who finally diagnosed the problem. Here’s a quick summary:

    Good news:

    • My injury is most likely NOT bursitis!!! Erik thinks my hip pain is likely muscular.
    • My injury is not “serious.” Meaning it’s not a joint or bone-on-bone issue.
    • At-home heating (via heating pad) and stretching (and yoga) will help a great deal.

    Bad news:

    • I need to stop running– at least for a little while.
    • My hips are misaligned (from scoliosis). My left hip is rotated forward, so when I run those muscles are working much harder (than the right side), which is why they are inflamed and hurt so much.
    • It could take awhile for my hip to heal. My recovery depends on how my body responses to these treatments.

    I went to Erik a few more times, but his services were really expensive (and not covered by my health insurance), so I stopped going. At this point, I was pretty much on my own, but I learned a lot from Erik with regard to managing the pain in my hip through heat and stretching.

    A few months later, my hip felt better, so I signed up for a marathon– mostly because I am crazy. My hip was feeling better, but, to be honest, I’m not sure my body was 100% ready to run a marathon at that point, but I didn’t care. Running a marathon was a huge goal of mine, and I wanted to at least try. If there’s a will, there’s a way!!

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    Thankfully, Team in Training had a fantastic marathon training plan that eased me into running longer and longer distances. Even still, I encountered a number of injuries while training, which I documented in the posts below:

    My Current Injury

    Currently, I’m dealing with a weird knee pain. It’s likely “Runner’s Knee,” so I’m doing everything in my power to heal it and prevent it from coming back. I also realize “Runner’s Knee” is a very common injury, so I thought it would be helpful to talk about my experience.

    Here’s what “Runner’s Knee” is all about (from Runner’s World):

    … patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS), or simply “runner’s knee,” is the most common overuse injury among runners. It occurs when a mistracking kneecap (patella) irritates the femoral groove in which it rests on the thighbone (femur).

    PFPS can affect one or both knees. It strikes mostly younger, recreational runners and twice as many women as men… (Women tend to have wider hips, resulting in a greater angling of the thighbone to the knee, which puts the kneecap under more stress.)

    Symptoms include tenderness behind or around the patella, usually toward its center. You may feel pain toward the back of the knee, a sense of cracking or that the knee’s giving out. Steps, hills, and uneven terrain can aggravate PFPS.

    Runner’s World also explains how to help cure runner’s knee, which includes running on softer surfaces, keeping mileage increases less than 10 percent per week, and gradually increasing hill work in your program. They also suggest visiting a specialty running shop to make sure you’re wearing the proper shoes for your foot type and gait just like I did last week. Also, strengthening your quadriceps will improve patellar tracking, and stretching your hamstrings and calves will prevent over-pronation.

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    How I Prevent Injuries

    Cross Training

    Training for a marathon taught me a lot about myself, especially with regard to running and how much my body can handle. I know there are plenty of people out there, who run nearly every day of the week, and rarely get injured. Well, my body sort of hates running, so, when I am training for a race, I generally stick to three days of running (or less) each week.

    The rest of my workouts are devoted to cross training, which I think is absolutely essential for me to stay injury-free. I talk about my perfect week of workouts in this post, which includes a mix of running, Body Pump, yoga, and rest.

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    Icing

    I can’t even explain the wonders of ice. It’s my miracle drug! Ice reduces pain and inflammation, and keeps me running!

    I use my Paradice Pack to ice my hip (and now my knee) after every single run I do— even the short ones. If I don’t, I know I’ll feel soreness the next day. I didn’t ice at all after my third half marathon in three weeks, which probably caused my knee pain in the first place. I also needed new sneakers, so I’m sure that didn’t help either.

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    My current icing routine is helping my knee a lot. It actually feels pretty much back to normal— although, I’m sure it’s from a combination of things (ice, stretching, foam rolling, yoga, rest), not just the ice.

    After Saturday’s 9-mile run, my knee was incredibly sore, so I iced it for 15-20 minutes minutes while watching TV and drinking iced coffee. (I stretched at the store immediately after my run.) Later in the day, I iced my knee again (while drinking a beer), and before bed, I iced it again (15-20 minutes each time). I also took a dose of Ibuprofen before bed. (I did some foam rolling too.)

    The next morning, my knee felt a zillion times better! I did the same routine on Sunday and Monday (with a 90-minute Slow Flow Yoga class mixed in), and I was able to complete a 5-mile Speed Workout on Tuesday afternoon without any pain! After the speed workout, I repeated the whole icing process on Tuesday evening and yesterday, and my knee is feeling really good now. 

    Foam Rolling

    Foam rolling is also a lifesaver for me, especially because my misaligned hips and super tight IT bands.

    I roll before and after running, and pretty much whenever I feel tight. I keep my foam roller in the living room to remind me to use it, and I often do it while watching TV. I roll for 5-30 minutes at a time and usually take breaks. I pretty much foam roll until my legs feel looser.

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    If you’ve never used a foam roller, Runner’s World has a great tutorial that explains a number of ways to use it.

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    Yoga

    I’ve said this before on CNC, but the quality of my running and related injuries directly correlates to the amount of yoga that I do. (I’ve also blogged about why I need yoga in my life.) When I start to slack on my yoga practice, I always seem to get injured, so I religiously take two yoga classes each week. Stretching out my legs (and back) in class definitely helps manage my tightness and prevents injuries.

    If you can’t make it to a class, but you’re looking for some runner-specific yoga, YogaDownload.com has a FREE 20-minute session available on their website just for runners. It’s great! I’m also loving the Fire Log pose for tight hips. I do it a couple of times a day now.

    If you currently struggling with an injury, I recommend that you see a doctor. Your problem might not be as simple as cross training, ice, foam rolling, and yoga. I know it’s valuable to hear about how other people have dealt with their injuries, but please remember that I am not a trained medical professional.

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    { 110 comments… read them below or add one }

    R @ Learning As I Chop May 5, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    Yoga really does seem to cure everything

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    Shannon May 5, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    ah, i didn’t realize it ended up being a rotation issue with your hips! i had a similar problem (mine were uneven and rotation was off), and got a recommendation. it’s been expensive, but worth it. i’d rather get this problem fixed now and run for many, many years than keep dealing with random other pains (and limiting my running) b/c of it. let me know if you ever want the guy’s info, he’s a biomechanist and he designs specific programs each visit to address what’s going on with your body.

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    Lauren Grier ( @ Grier Mountain) May 5, 2011 at 12:02 pm

    Tina – I love this post! Thank you for sharing all of your tips.

    I battled with a hip injury after I ran my first half -marathon back in 2008. I went to the messiah of doctors out here in CO but they couldn’t find anything wrong. It wasn’t until my husband began researching about Chi Running that I finally found some relief. My running form was completely wrong. From my foot strike to my shoulders to the way I moved my hips. At first it was hard to train my body to run “correctly” because in my opinion no one teaches you how to run correctly. You just go!

    After 3 months of working on my form, my hip and knees stopped hurting and I finished my first marathon in April, pain free. If anything it’s something to look into. Everyone is built different but I thought I would mention it to you just in case you hadn’t heard about the book.

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    Carol May 5, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Thanks for another great post! I am starting my running program again after a 3 month hiatus due to Achilles issues. Slow and steady is my motto:) I am attempting three miles today.
    I have used yoga, calf raises, some rolling, and rest to heal.

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    Cara @ EAT.PRAY.RUN May 5, 2011 at 12:16 pm

    I know it’s such a bummer being an ‘injury prone’ runner – i’m so jealous of those who seem to slide by without the aches and pains! You seem to do a great job taking care of yourself so keep it up! I love the ice bath picture with a beer in hand — thatta girl ;)

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    Michelle @michellegmason.com/blog May 5, 2011 at 12:25 pm

    Apologies in advance if this is an obvious question, but where exactly does your hip hurt? I guess this question also applies to anyone who responded in the comments that they have hip issues. Do you feel it in the front, above the thigh, or on the side or what? I’m still kind of a newbie runner, and I experience most of my pain below the hip bone/above the thigh on the front of my leg. Just trying to gauge if that is IT band-related or something else…

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    Tina May 5, 2011 at 1:25 pm

    @Michelle @michellegmason.com/blog: The upper-side part of my hip. It’s always sore.

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    amanda@ runningoncoffee May 5, 2011 at 12:35 pm

    Great post! I’ve been injury free since I started running regularly over 2 years ago (knock on wood). I attribute it to slowly increasing my mileage, and taking rest days. When I started, I was maybe running 5-8 miles/week. Now I have run 3 halfs and run around 20-25. mpw (sometimes closer to 30 in the weeks leading up to a half).As my mileage increased, I mixed in riding my bike and spinning classes, and 5 months ago I started weekly boot camp classes to help with core strength, but I’ve also noticed an improvement in upper body and leg muscles.

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    Natalia - a side of simple May 5, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    Tina, thank you so much for taking the time to write this post! I’ve found that learning about other athletes’ injuries and their methods for recovery have been MUCH more useful than doctors and what they suggest. Of course, I realize the importance of medical professionals, but I’ve had much better recovery times and success with my own personal research and the help of bloggers!

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    Alexis May 5, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    Make sure that you are replacing your shoes enough! Even if you only run a few times a week, you add mileage in your shoes if you wear them for walking. If you start getting weird shin or knee pain, check your shoes and/or the insoles you may have bought. :)

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    Tina May 5, 2011 at 1:29 pm

    @Alexis: Yep, that’s exactly why I mentioned buying new sneakers. I think that was part of the problem.

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    Emily @ Savory and Savage May 5, 2011 at 12:45 pm

    Great post! I found that a regular yoga practice (maybe because it builds up the quadriceps??) really helped in preventing injuries but I only saw that effect after about 8 months consistent yoga practice.

    I gotta try that foam roller for my IT bands!

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    Khushboo May 5, 2011 at 12:58 pm

    Great post! Although Ive fortunately not experienced an injury, I try to limit my runs to 3 weekly- rather that than not at all! Will def make it a point to stretch more as that’s one thing I’m majorly slacking in!

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    Nicole May 5, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    I have suffered from the same kind of knee pain….at first I stopped running and then got a trainer who taught me the proper exercises to strengthen the muscles around my knee which worked for a long time. The pain eventually came back and I had to stop running for a good year bc of how bad it was- I went to countless doctors and tried PT none worked long term. I was talking about my issues with someone at my gym and she reccomended that I try to take glucosamine. (which I am sure everyone has heard of or taken) I now take the GNC Triflex Sport which contains the Glucosamine, Chondroitin, and MSM and it has 100% saved my knee. In the beginning I took 2 pills twice a day with fish oil (they said it would help in combination) and now have weened down to just 2 twice a day without the fish oil. As long as I am consistent with these pills my knee pain stays away- it really saved my running life!!!!!

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    Sam May 5, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    Terrific post. My wife raves about your posts! She forwarded me this with hopes that I could help with additional pointers. I’m a corrective movement specialist that works with folks just like everyone that has replied to this post with “overuse injuries” with my colleague Aaron Brooks.

    The Chiro, Erik is definitely on the right path with it being a muscular and hip imbalance, but I’d debate whether it is a scoliosis issue that you had preexisting or if it was a hip misalignment that was caused by lifestyle tendencies and activities of daily living (sitting in front of a computer, driving, watching TV/reading etc etc.) Rather than focusing on the site of the injury/muscle tightness, a more global approach of improving muscle, hip and movement asymmetries needs to be had. For example, if your hamstrings feel “tight” all the time stretching them and foam rolling them may not resolve the long term issue. The issue is more likely an excessive anterior pelvic tilt and perhaps one hip having more of a tilt than the other. As a result, your hamstrings are always overstretched making them feel tight…so what do you do, stretch them more! Probably not the ideal situation.

    By cleaning up the imbalance through some properly sequenced corrective exercises and restoring proper movement patterns by not allowing your body to go the path of least resistance (law of facilitation) the injuries will be gone and not keep coming back even after every attempt to ice, roll and stretch. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for that as an immediate resolve but if you have to do it every single time you go out for a run, workout or whatever you need to correct the underlying issue by retraining your body to move well first then move often. You can find a lot more about this at http://www.functionalmovement.com and http://www.perfectpostures.com as well. Feel free to contact me if you have further questions about chronic/acute injuries.

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    Shannon May 5, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    @Sam: glad Sam came and commented, it’s actually Aaron that I’ve been working with since October, and would agree it’s key to resolve the underlying issue. i’ve been frustrated with years trying to treat other symptoms unsuccessfully and continuing to have issues while training.

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    Jennifer @ Flowtation Devices May 5, 2011 at 8:09 pm

    @Sam: Wish I consulted guys like you before I went out and busted MY hip. I’ve had a hip imbalance for years; VERY evident in yoga downdog, when one hip was clearly higher than the other. Thanks to years of ballet (feet and hips being forced to turn out) plus hypermobile joints (wonky sacroiliac joint), my hips were primed for injury when I started a running regimen 2 years ago. Within a year of running, I started experiencing severe hip pain–insert lots of massage, PT, chiropractic, Pilates, sports doctor visits here–and then finally after an MRI w/dye I found out I had a small labral tear. Unfortunately, I am not sold on the surgery yet (still too new, IMO), so I’ve done some PT to learn how to stabilize my core and cope with the injury for now. Had to give up running, though, can’t even use the elliptical because my femur bumps against the torn cartilage during that gliding motion. I blame all my years of dance with the emphasis on STRETCH, STRETCH, STRETCH and hardly any strengthening. I think all serious dancers should be required to take Pilates!
    Question: Do you think it’s possible to get an FMS evaluation/treatment plan even with an underlying injury such as the labral tear? I have no desire for surgery, but I want to do everything I can to keep my body as balanced as it can be and eliminate as much compensation as possible.

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    Sam May 6, 2011 at 9:34 am

    @Jennifer @ Flowtation Devices: Great question. When your body’s gotten to the point where you have cartilage damage or significant joint pathology, its very challenging to return to the form you were prior to the injury, but it is possible. The FMS is a screening to see above all else if you have pain with functional movements. Where you already know you have pain in certain movements getting a Selective Functional Movement Assessment (SFMA) by a qualified health practitioner or a postural evaluation by Aaron Brooks group, can help avoid going under the knife. Once you’ve gotten the eval, it is only then that a decision needs to be made with all things considered whether surgery in needed. Hopefully you don’t have to but surgeons have a bias toward one thing…surgery.

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    Brooke (You Can Get Fit!) May 6, 2011 at 1:05 am

    @Sam: Yes yes! I was hoping someone would speak up on functional fitness/Pilates/training type approach… this is where I try to go with my Pilates clients–what do they do on a routine basis (activities of daily living) that might create faulty movement patterns and therefore pain? I help them work through their troubles. :)

    This type of work helped me before/in between my two surgeries to fix two hip labral tears and a poorly-shaped hip joint (both on the hip socket and femoral head side). The first surgeon didn’t clean up much of the problem, and I still had a lot of pain–but using my movement principles, I got so strong and moving so well that the second surgeon (unfortunately) didn’t know how bad off I was until he opened me up… :o

    That said–I highly recommend seeing someone like Sam above, or a rehab-minded Pilates studio. I hope to run again someday!!

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    Danielle D. May 5, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    Tina-

    I can’t thank you enough for sharing this post with us. I am 10 days away from running my first marathon and had a major setback about 3 weeks ago. In looking through your training plan for the Rock N’ Roll marathon I have gained the confidence I am lacking in regards to if I have trained enough for this race. I appreciate your openness and honesty!

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    Jamie aka "Sometimes Healthy" Girl May 5, 2011 at 1:31 pm

    Great post! I totally agree on the power of the foam roll. It’s a lifesaver!

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    Vanessa @ Gourmet Runner May 5, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    This is a great post–not least because it shows that there are lots of things we can do to prevent injuries before they happen. I’m a big believer in cross-training. I make sure to include yoga and strength training along with my 5 days a week of running. I also love love love my foam roller!

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    Yellaphant May 5, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    My foam roller saved my life. And I’ve recently gotten back into yoga after a year+ hiatus. I am absolutely loving it. My mileage is higher than ever, but armed with my roller and my yoga, I feel awesome!

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    Erin @ Big Girl Feats May 5, 2011 at 2:25 pm

    Great post, Tina! I was diagnosed with bursitis about a year ago, after trying to figure out what it was (went through two bad PT’s who misdiagnosed me, ugh!) for a few months. I had to stop running for about a year and it was heartbreaking! But that time allowed me to find yoga (which is almost as fun as running to me). I just started back into a run/walk program this week and it’s been SO fun to just run because I can. Foam rolling has also been a life saver for me too. I hope your knee injury heals itself quickly!

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    Katherine: Unemployed May 5, 2011 at 2:52 pm

    are you wearing leggings in the ice bath picture? lol

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    Jillian May 5, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    It’s so scary how much damage a person can do if they continue to run on an injury. I was active through grade school and high school in all sports, track & field, cross country, especially. I had a hip pain that I let go for a long time, only to find out it was a bone spur that caused a labreal tear. I ended up having surgery on both hips (1 year apart) and now, 3 years later, I am able to run perfectly fine. I still have slight pain when it rains (haha). I’m not sure if that’s what your hip could be, but it took a lot of doctors and visits to find out! It’s just the way your hips form as you grow.

    I hope your knee heals quickly! Foam rollers rock! I used them at PT and fell in love.

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    Elena @ GagaForGrapefruit May 5, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    ugh how frustrating! these are great tips for those who have experience with injuries as well!

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    Olivia May 5, 2011 at 3:05 pm

    Tina, thanks for this amazing post! I’m experiencing a really tough hip/IT band injury – it’s been going on for a couple of months now, despite going to two different PTs. I hate to admit it, but I was feeling really let down and sorry for myself because I haven’t been able to run lately – this post gave me hope that I might recover and it definitely picked up my spirits again! Thanks!

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    Maria May 5, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    Good posting :-) I suffered PFS last year, it was more annoying than painful. Lots of ice and stretching. I’m running my first marathon this year and suffered a really bad sprain a month ago. I’m going to try running today to see how it feels :-/ But I’m definitely going to purchase a foam roller, they are ah-mazing! And I agree with yoga, it feels so great to stretch out at the end of the week (I do it on Sundays).

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    Melissa May 5, 2011 at 3:21 pm

    Fantastic post, Tina! I really need someone to kick me in the butt and MAKE me stretch and foam roll after running. It’s so hard for me to get into the habit. For some reason, I just can’t make myself!

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    Marisa E May 6, 2011 at 10:12 am

    @Melissa: I totally agree. I’ve been dealing with terrible hip pain for a few months now and although I’ve been going to the Chiropractor, I’m really not doing my part. Not stretching enough, my foam roller is collecting dust….. *slap on the wrist*
    I’m running the Philadelphia Rock n Roll Half Marathon (my first!) in September so I really need to work on injury prevention.
    This was an awesome post- Thanks Tina!!

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    Manon May 5, 2011 at 3:28 pm

    Great post! I know this sounds horrible, but being someone who hasn’t been able to even walk, or at least normally, for 4 months, and is looking at at least 6 months of no running, if I’m lucky, it actually helps to know there are other people who deal wth the frustrations. I’m not sure what’s worse, doing something as major as I did, or having something nagging that keeps rearing it’s ugly head. Gah! Why can’t our bodies just cooperate?!?

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    Alaina May 5, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    Foam rolling looks uncomfortable and awkward. :-P I’ll bet it works like a charm though.

    Thank you for the tips. I ended up with runners knee last year because I was doing zero cross training. I’m making sure to have a bit more in my routine nowadays and my knees don’t hurt as much.

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    Serena May 5, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    These are some great tips Tina! I always get this weird pain in my right calf area everytime I run more than 3 miles. Maybe the icing will help?

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    Emma (Namaste Everyday) May 5, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    there are so many great tips in this post, thank you! I am starting to become a runner, but I’m scared to taking things too hard for fear of an injury. It’s good thing I do yoga every day, then!

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    Kaitlin With Honey May 5, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    I don’t comment very often, but I have to send a big THANK YOU your way for this post. I am dealing with knee issues and am currently not able to run, so reading about your experiences with this was so cool. I read your blog regularly but a comprehensive post like this, going over injuries in one fell swoop, is awesome. You give me hope that I will run again!

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    Liz May 5, 2011 at 6:26 pm

    Thanks for the excellent post, Tina! One thing you mention that’s really valuable is REST! I tore my meniscus in each knee in July because I did way too much cycling and spinning– at too high an intensity level– without taking days off to rest my body. I’d work out 7 days a week, and on occasion I’d take two spin classes in a row. Or I’d do a spin class followed by a 90 minute hot vinyasa class. I love working out and experimenting with different forms of exercise, but I just really overdid it. As a result, I had to have arthroscopic surgery on both knees; the left knee was operated on in October, and the right was done 8 days ago. Unfortunately this has prevented me from cycling– forget about running– for almost 10 months now. The first knee has healed well, but the second will take some time. Patience and positivity are key in recovering from an injury.

    For anyone interested in the NYC area, I can tell you that the workout program Revolution in Motion really helped my first knee recover. I plan on going back after finishing physical therapy on knee #2. Here’s a link if you want to check it out:
    http://revolution-in-motion.com/

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    Amanda @ Eating Up May 5, 2011 at 6:59 pm

    What a great post! I appreciate you sharing all of that info in one place!

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    Holley @ Lunges and Lashes May 5, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    Thanks for filling me in! I was wondering about all this when you reference your injuries. I always feel like I learn from other peoples experiences too, so thanks for sharing!

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    Hannah May 5, 2011 at 7:47 pm

    I love the fact that, even though this post is about pain, the photos of you in exercise-mode show how truly happy it makes you (the exercise, not the pain!)

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    Emily J May 5, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    Hey Tina!
    I just want to say, as a PT student who’ll be licensed in less than 9 months (Yay!) that I hope you don’t give up on PT for future needs (knock on wood you won’t need it!). It’s quite possible you didn’t have a PT experienced in the area you needed him/her to be. Pelvic malalignments certainly are tough to pickup, especially when you think it’s something else, like bursitis, and are focused on that. Clearly, I’m a believer in PT, but there are times when PT doesn’t work for some reason! We’re not miracle workers :)
    Anyway, so glad you’re doing well! Love you blog!!
    Emily

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    Jessica May 5, 2011 at 8:59 pm

    Tina,

    I had the exact same problem & had mo luck with a PT. I was recommended to a myofascial therapist who was also a PT & it completely changed my life!!! Not only did he help during the fee sessions I had, but he taught me how to treat myself at home with a tennis ball! I cannot say enough about the therapy & it’s the only way I can now run pain free(mostly).

    I would try to find one in your area!

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    Jena May 5, 2011 at 9:00 pm

    This post couldn’t have come at a better time. I’m currently not running because of a knee injury. It only hurts when I run, so that means I can do whatever kind of cross-training I want.

    I went to the Dr. yesterday and I think he is pretty much baffled. He is sending me to PT 3x/wk for 3wks…He ordered a knee brace, and prescribed me an anti-inflammatory.. We’ll see.

    Reply

    Anne May 5, 2011 at 9:42 pm

    I am 24 years old and have already had 4 hip surgeries. I also have worn down cartilage and tendonitis in both of my knees and used to regularly get cortisone injections. Nothing really helped, until I read “Born to Run” (http://www.amazon.com/Born-Run-Superathletes-Greatest-Vintage/dp/0307279189/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1304645991&sr=8-1) and it has literally changed my life. No amount of physical therapy, surgeries, icing, or heat therapy can help until you start with the basic lessons as outlined in this book.
    Please feel free to email me if you have any questions or would like information. Running has been an important part of my life for years, and without this book I wouldn’t be able to run at all. Good luck!

    Reply

    Bambi May 5, 2011 at 10:05 pm

    Thanks for this post. I’m still working up to running but I plan on using this advice as I work towards running and while I’m walking.

    Reply

    Hilary May 5, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    Thanks for the tips! I need to be better at stretching/taking care of myself after I run!

    Reply

    Courtney May 6, 2011 at 2:48 pm

    I have suffered a series of injuries over the years and was always a bit discouraged by it. I’ve had knee, ankle, and most recently an abdominal muscle strain, and finally started seeing a really great physical therapist/wellness guru. She recommended Chi Running (www.chirunning.com) to work on the subtle mechanics of running that I have never really noticed, and it has REALLY been working. It felt a little awkward at first, but I feel like the exercises and body alignment pointers are super helpful. You should check it out!

    Reply

    Marcia @Frugal Healthy Simple May 6, 2011 at 11:35 pm

    Wow. So much of that resonated with me. I could have written much of that myself, and I want to thank you so much for writing it.

    I injured my left hip while training for my second half marathon. PT helped a bit, but didn’t cure it, and only helped while I went. So I quit. My doctor has recommended orthotics and the foam roller, mostly because I pronate and my left hip has to work a lot harder because of how I run.

    My friends have recommended acupuncture, icing, ibuprofen, and chiro. My neighbor is a sports chiro, I should just stop by with a bottle of wine. Right now I am attempting to run here and there but barefoot (before trying out the orthotics). At this point, I don’t need to run another half, I’d be happy with 2 miles 2x a week.

    I started with the hip injury when I was getting to close to the 2nd half, and I decided to stop going to yoga and stop cross training to avoid injury. (Stupid!!) I had been doing yoga the day after my long runs. I switched to training for a triathlon (during the PT) and then ended up with runner’s knee (felt it pop during my last track workout before the tri).

    The fact that you have recovered from the same injuries that I am currently suffering from is very inspiring. It gives me hope that the 40 year old knees and hips might be able to do it! Now off to get myself a good ice pack. I have been good about continuing to exercise, biking, walking, yoga, P90X lifting, swimming.

    Reply

    The Rock Workout Guy August 19, 2011 at 12:31 am

    Great post. I usually don’t post comments but I just had to for this. Remarkable advice! I have already been hunting for something like this for a long time now. Many thanks!

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    Sandi Mazzilli December 2, 2012 at 12:16 pm

    After 4 marathons….I thought there was NO hip help. I am doing Pelvic Floor therapy. I have done it in the past….really helps for mis aligned hips too… Bottom line is when I am not in PT…and don’t continue the exercises my body goes right back to hurting in the same area (hips.) I love body pump too!!!

    Where do you live? I am new in Encinitas, CA and having a hard time finding the “right group”….ran yesterday with people who were OK with walking, talking, running…..wore me out! I just want to run with another who wants to accomplish a goal and listen to their music. But, the serious running groups meet at night…I have kids!

    Reply

    jared January 12, 2013 at 4:52 pm

    hi,

    very interesting post on injuries as i am currently sufferng from one (started as a bad hip and moved down to my knee and sort of whole leg at times – think it may me an IT band issue from what i have read).

    the bit i found really interesting though is that you managed to complete a 5 mile speed workout pain free. the injury i have at the mo came on after a slow recovery run and has come on after slow ‘plods before’ however when i run fast i dont get it! im assuming its because when i ‘go for it’ speed-wise my form and technique are alot better than when im ploddding.

    wondering what your thoughts are on that and if its something you’ve noticed too?

    nice blog by the way – keep up the good work!

    Jared

    Reply

    olda June 14, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    I share you love of running. This feeling of euphoria is not compared with anything else. And you just run in spite of injuries – it makes one stronger and healthier.

    Reply

    Jrhaggie82 July 20, 2013 at 8:38 am

    I also have had issues with my running. I am a 28 yr Army veteran and the ability to run is very important to me. Over the years I had gotten to the point were doctors were telling me that I had to stop running and needed a knee replacement in the future. My right knee had little to no meniscus or cartarage not to mention constant lower back pain. Instead of quitting I made a radical change and I now run pain free. I did the complete opposite of doctors recommendations.

    What I did will I am sure also help you. First I changed my running style to midstrike. there are numerous articles on how this cuts down on impact injuries and pain. This keeps your legs up under you especially with the shorter strides. Secondly I worked towards minimalist or ZERO shoes I started with sketchers “Go Runs” they helped me get into midstrike running and they are a good bridge shoe to minimalist shoes. Then I started running with New Balance Nimbus and Recently Merrils Road Gloove shoes and when I am not in PT uniform (Army doesn’t not allow them) I will run with five fingers. Bottom line I run better than I ever have and I run pain free.

    Reply

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