My amateur diagnosis is that I've royally pissed off my IT band. It's a really common running injury, generally caused by overtraining or overuse. I first felt the pain a few days before I ran Stone Mill 50. You may recall that I ran the race with a heating patch on my ass and this is why. Obviously it wasn't that bad because I ran 50 miles on it (or I'm just that stupid), but I do remember that it was painful the whole day. After the race, I rested and then had a period of running less (about 40 miles a week) and everything felt good again.
Last week I started feeling the twingy pain again, but it was mostly when I was standing up or sitting down. Then I did a speed-walking workout and that was the straw that broke the camel's back and after that, I was hobbling around and had sharp stabbing pain when I tried to sit down or stand up. I could still run, so I did...like an idiot.
I'd love to say that I regret running through the pain and making things worse, but I'd probably do it again so I'm not going to lie. Basically, I needed to know for sure it wasn't just one of those things that resolves itself with no effort beyond icing and stretching from me. So since that debilitating speed walk, I ran 46 more miles until I finally decided I was making it worse. The key factor is that was my back seizing up, which I assume is connected to my hip/leg/butt issue. Currently I can't even stand up straight because of the pain in my back and I'm walking around like Igor on an errand because of the pain in my leg. Sleep has been scarce for about a week now because I can't get comfortable and the pain wakes me up.
Rest: I'm going to start with a week of no activity. I started this yesterday and so far, I'm not healed yet. I want my money back.
Massage: I've already booked a massage with someone who specializes in sports injuries so fingers crossed that she helps and doesn't make me ugly cry on the massage table.
Icing and stretching: I'm only foam rolling every other day so I don't cross that line of helpful to hurtful.
Strengthening exercises: Once the inflammation and pain improve, I'll start with targeted strength moves. Dr. Google has already recommended several good ones for me.
Luckily, I still have three months until my race so even if I end up taking two weeks off to recover, I'll be fine because I'm not missing any key peak runs in my training plan. Of course if I don't get better then I'm up shit creek without a paddle in regards to that race, but I can't worry about that yet. I just need to be smart about this so I can con my body into thinking I love and care about it before I punish it mercilessly by making it run 100 miles.
Maybe I'll even learn from this experience and be less stupid about injuries in the future, but let's not kid ourselves.
Have you ever had an IT band injury? Tell me about it, but make sure it has a happy ending please.