Two weeks ago I started running (again). I don’t think the “again” really counts, because I’ve never consistently run for any decent period of time. I have had bouts of running in the past, but my legs were always an enormously limiting factor. I would get shin-splints almost instantly, which is something pretty difficult to work through.
On a seemingly unrelated note, I started having terrible back pain two years ago. I suspect it began one summer at the camp sail docks, lifting just the right boat in just the wrong way. The pain went away eventually, but came back in full force thanks to a squash injury (a sport notorious for back injuries due to the ducking and twisting motions it requires). Since then I’ve seen three physiotherapists and two massage therapists with a 2 month backpacking trip somewhere in between. Nothing seemed to be working. Nothing until this last massage therapist.
This guy is a freakin’ miracle worker. The treatments hurt like hell, but now I can sit down for any length of time without being in terrible amounts of pain. And somehow through the course of these treatments it became clear that these back injuries were not a result of simply pulling my back. It had been something that was building for a long time. Too much sitting, not enough activity to keep the hips mobile. My massage therapist’s theory is that if the muscles in the hips are too stiff, they constrict the innervating nerves and arteries of the legs, which makes the leg muscles more stiff and cuts off their circulation (which could lead to things like shin-splints).
I’m not sure how accurate the theory is. It certainly sounds plausible. But either way, the treatment WORKS. So like I said, I started running last week, and suddenly the limiting factor isn’t my legs any more – it’s my lungs! Just the way it should be considering I have mild asthma! But this is awesome. I put on an entertaining podcast, throw on my runners and away I go. I was running every other day for 10 days up until this past Thursday (at which point I had a busy weekend visiting family). But tomorrow I’m getting back on the road!
It feels so good to be running. I can’t believe I’ve been doing without it for so long.
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