Friday, December 7, 2012

Beginning of Winter Blues (and Injuries)

I did not run a step the week before Thanksgiving.  The idea was to rest and then begin a long, slow, and gradual build-up going into the February races and, even farther out, Bighorn.  As usual, I was an idiot.  And now I am really hurt.

Before I took that week off, I went for a trail run at Happy Jack.  It had just snowed about an inch, so I threw on my microspikes and had a good time.  About halfway through the run, I felt a pinch in the middle of my lower back, right above my butt.  It nagged the rest of the run, but I didn't think anything of it.  It continued to hurt the rest of the weekend, keeping me mostly couch-bound (well, that and football).  After a day or two, it seemed fine.

Thanksgiving morning I ran the 4-miler in Fort Collins.  I ran slow, which was a reflection of the fitness (or lack thereof) I had at the time.  I didn't run again until we brought back Tuesday Night Hills last week.  After the hill session, I was in rough shape.  My back pain kept me up at night several nights in a row, forcing me to seek refuge on the couch or in the la-z-boy, and had me cringing all day at work.  My office chair was killing me.  

I kept running thinking that would help.  I was just a little weak; so I did a bunch of core work to compensate.  It seems to have had the opposite effect.

After another round of hills Tuesday, I shelved it.  I could barely move when I got home.

The pain radiates from that spot in the middle of my lower back which makes me curious if I did something to my lower spine.  However, after the hill session, I was hurting most in my upper glutes, particularly the left one, and that pain radiated from my back through my glute and down into my hamstring.  That makes me think it may be sciatica, which is something I've had issues with in the past (I suffered for a bit with it in high school).

Anyway, I haven't run in three days and things are feeling quite a bit better.  However, it does seem that running is 100% responsible for this, which sucks.  I want to be running.

I am going to let it heal and then figure out some new routine or whatnot to fix this.  I'll do just about anything in order to keep running.