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Running against my own worst enemy!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

There is a quote from an old Pogo comic strip, "We have met the enemy and he is us!"

I often think about this Pogo quote when I do something stupid and injure myself for the sake of improving my health.

Over the past two months I have been in physical therapy to cure a self-inflicted over-use running injury called bilateral hip bursitis. Since starting therapy I have been "good". I have listened to my physical therapist, Adam. I have done all the strange exercises with the rubber stretchy thing. I have done all the bizarre stretches. I have gotten tons better!

About a week ago Adam gave me the green light to start doing some easy running. I was so happy to run again I actually tried to jog.

“v.intr. jog•ging, To run at a slow or leisurely pace.”

I am not a natural jogger. I usually run too fast and burn out quickly. I really worked hard at keeping a “leisurely pace”. I was so proud! I took a few days off to rest and recover. I was amazed that I was showing signs of becoming a common-sense runner.

The next time I went running I decide to hit the high-school track. I took my timer along just to see how “fast” a slow and leisurely pace really was.

I heard in my head “Danger! Danger, Will Robinson!” Due to my overly competitive nature, a timer on a measured distance means only one thing – this ain’t fun anymore! My wife saw me leaving with my timer. She asked me, “Why can’t you just go running without a watch.” I shrug my shoulders, “I gotta know how much speed I have lost!” She asks, “What does it matter?” Dang, I hate logic! Do I listen? Nope!

I got on the track and hit the “go” button on my timer. I started at a gentle jog. I did a lap. The timer showed 00.02:27. I did the math. That works out to about a 30 minute 5k. I picked up the pace a bit. I start breathing very hard. I didn’t push it. I conked-out at the 4k mark in about 24 minutes. I just ran out of breath.

I have a long way to go!


I Did It! I Actually Jogged!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

I went on a run today. I took little steps. I took slow steps. I ran intevals. I ran for 90 seconds then walked for 60 seconds. I did these intervals for 30 minutes. I was very pokey!

I think that is what it must feel like to jog. I didn't even break a sweat. I didn't hurt myself either.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RUNNER_TIFF_07 8/22/2009 1:32PM

    Sounds like a great place to start! I did the Couch to 5K program from Nov08-Jan09 and that's pretty much what you do in the beginning, increasing the amount you run and decreasing the amount you walk over time. I highly recommend it :). Keep up the good work!

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MYSOLDIERSWIFE 8/22/2009 12:25PM

    emoticon i have to laugh because that is exactly how i started out! except i was sweating like a hog and gasping for breath! take it slow, keep your chin up and you'll be going all out in no time- i hope!

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MEADSBAY 8/14/2009 8:18PM

That's what I do, Sparky.
I run 100 steps (which I'm not supposed to do because of knee and bladder issues) every 3-4 min of my walk. I do it to get my heart rate up.
Keep it up!

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BJENKINS1014 8/14/2009 6:00PM

    Good for you! I love walking, but I've never liked running. However, it sounds like you have the right method for getting started. You and some other Spark friends have me getting interested...

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KAYAKID 8/14/2009 1:32AM

    You'll get there my friend- Pace yourself and you'll get there - Good luck to you....

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1MILETOGO 8/13/2009 11:07PM

    Great Job!

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1MILETOGO 8/13/2009 11:06PM

    Great Job!

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JERIBERI1 8/13/2009 10:40PM

    That's fantastic!!

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ELISEL 8/13/2009 9:54PM

    Good for you!!! Isn't it a great feeling.

I never ran a step in my life until last year. That's when I started the Couch 2 5K program. (If you're interested go to the CoolRunning website) It's a interval program that builds you up to 30 minutes of running by starting with the walking and running intervals and increasing the running time.

Starting slow and building up really is the way to go.

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Time to Start Running Again - Maybe

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

My physical therapist told me I can start doing some easy running. I am not sure I can do easy running. The feet just start moving too dang fast! But maybe, just maybe, I can learn to jog.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

1MILETOGO 8/13/2009 12:17AM

    Congrats on your great news from your Physical therapist. Take it slow, it is better to enjoy the feeling of running at a slower pace than not at all. Your speed will return when you are fully 100%

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KAYAKID 8/12/2009 11:28PM

    Just take it easy!!! patience will get you where you want to be...

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Physical Therapy is For Sissies

Thursday, August 06, 2009

I like running. I like running a lot! Unfortunately, I have not been able to run for over a month. During a training run my right hip exploded in pain! My left hip was sore also. I went to my doctor. “Hey, doc, I got some pain in my hips, get the cortisone “! My doctor decides I need a bilateral hip x-ray! “Bilateral” is medical speech for “both sides”.

He sends me to the radiology clinic to get the x-ray.

The x-ray shows I have perfectly healthy 52 year-old hip joints. Not even a smidgen of osteoarthritis. After much jerking and twisting my legs, my doctor tells me I have hip bursitis. I could have told them that! “Ok doc, where is the cortisone?” My doctor decides I need physical therapy.

I go to the physical therapist to get an evaluation. The physical therapist, named Adam, looks like he is about 12 years-old. I lay down on the table and he starts bending, twisting and yanking on my legs. He then gives me the “news”. He looks thoughtful, “Bruce, your right hip pain is due to a very tight IT band.” Check one! I already knew that! My IT bands are tighter than the cables holding up the Golden Gate Bridge. Adam continued, “Your hamstrings are inflexible”. Check two! The Wizard of OZ Tin Man is more flexible than me. Adam then dropped the bomb, “Your left hip problem is due to muscle weakness”! No way! I can leg press a locomotive! Leap small buildings in a single bound! I resisted saying, “What the heck are talking about you little pipsqueak! I can drop kick you into next week!” I actually said. “How is that? Oh wise and worldly one.” Ok, I am lying. I was dumbfounded! Adam explained that there are small muscles that are not strengthened by lifting locomotives.

Adam gave me this rubber thingy called a therapy band. He also gave me a sheet a paper with three bizarre stretches and four strange exercises. He also told me if any of these stretches or exercises starts to hurt that I should stop. I am washed-up ex-collegiate athlete, “No pain – No gain!” Well, I returned the locomotive to the Union Pacific and started doing the prescribed exercises with the rubber thingy. You know what? It was blasted hard to stretch the stupid little rubber thingy while doing the stupid exercises! The kid was right. I did indeed have some small muscle weakness.

Although I thought that Ibuprofen and cortisone would be an easy way to make the problem go away, the silly stretches and dumb exercises are working. I guess I was wrong. I hate that when that happens!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KAYAKID 8/8/2009 3:25PM

    listen to the pt they will guide you back to running - good luck to you. Its hard for us guys to think we know everything and can do it on our own.


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SLCB1023 8/6/2009 10:03PM

    The rest of that statement is "NO PAIN... NO GAIN... NO BRAIN" LOL

Yup I been there too only with the left hip, first hips bursitis, then IT band tightness, then pirimoris syndrome. THREE PT sessions and it still bothers. Good for you that your doctor sent you to PT instead of just treating with a shot. Yes, I had the shots too... also THREE times. Always comes back unless you treat the cause.... yup muscle weakness. So listen to your PT and do you exercises, not just now, and not just when you feel better, but forever. emoticon

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    LOL! i feel your pain! i am recovering from surgery and can't run for another week-- it's hell!

and for all that DRs sometimes say the stupidest things-- sometimes they don't. they do go to school for a number of years to learn to be as compitent/incompitent as they are :-) hopefully with this new physical therapy, you'll be back up and running in no time! if not, well, there's always your next life, right ? emoticon

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CHEWIEKIKI 8/6/2009 9:38AM

    Hahaha - been there, done that. Steamboats?

I have started doing boot camp work outs (now P90X) and yoga, and I am seeing a tremendous amount of improvement in some of those weird week areas, plus better flexibility and balance. All good stuff for managing IT band issues.

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    for the most part most of think that PT does seem rather useless HOWEVER, if you do as your told its amazing the results you can get...glad your feeling better!

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Blew out my hip - no more running for a while

Friday, July 03, 2009

I was scheduled to run in the Freedom 5k in Evergreen, Colorado, on July the 4th. I am not going to make it. On Tuesday I went on a training run. I took a few steps and it felt like someone had hammered a hot spike into right hip! I hobbled back to the car and drove home.

I went to see my Doctor the next day. She told me I had probably had bursitis. She gave me a cortisone shot and told me to take it easy. The pain subsided in my hip. I thought all was well. I figured a bit of rest and I would be cured. The next day I decided to take my dog for a walk. I got about 50 yards up the road and - POW - my hip exploded in pain!

I went back to the Doctor.

She told me the cortisone shot was ineffective and there may be something else wrong. She prescribed Vicodin for the pain. I have to go for an X-Ray on Monday. She said something about arthritis.

Not good.

I have had to cut my activity level way back. I am not a happy guy!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HARRINGTON5 7/5/2009 12:36PM

I am so sorry to hear about your hip! Thank you for commenting on my blog. I have had a long rest and just started jogging a little. I am going to take it real slow. I hope you are getting better. That really does suck because you sound like a very competitive guy. Please take care of yourself. Cynthia

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    oh man! that really sucks! i'm so sorry. i hope you recover quickly and don't have anything perminant! emoticon

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SUNSHINEBILL 7/3/2009 10:36PM

    Best wishes for a speedy recovery. Our minds will lie to us but our bodies never do. You are in my prayers and please enjoy the 4th. emoticon

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KAYAKID 7/3/2009 10:35PM

    I am so sorry about your hip. What a bummer! I will pray for a good doctor visit and for a speedy recovery. Try to have a good 4th of July.

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RENA1965 7/3/2009 9:35PM

    Hi Olddog57,
Sorry to hear about your bad luck, I hope you get better real soon. Give the hip a rest and perhaps a change of fields of sport? Running is hard on joints, sometimes we have problems with our backs that wear joints down and also having a heavy job can do it.. I got impact spinal injury from 6 years of aerobics, I now live a more quiet life doing weight training. My chiropacters also said strength training helps muscles support discs and jointes. He was right, I am now medicination free from a crumbled c7 and have not had surgery or need it. I jog now and again to check my cardio fittness, but years of being uneven in my spinal column has worn my hip and knee on the offending side.
I now spread myself over walking at work, power walking, and body building. I never do super hard pounding high impact anymore. I have found exercises to strengthen my hips, back and neck. They no longer ache all the time and my posture has improved.
Many experts are screaming to us to spread ourselfs over more than one sport.. I hate sitting on the side line, when aerobics was something I was good at. But surprisingly I got more results changinge fields. It doesn't have to be a bad thing changing, I now listen to my joints and back more carefully and life is okay..

Comment edited on: 7/3/2009 9:37:34 PM

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MINDHUNTER93230 7/3/2009 4:30PM

    WOW I know you must be really frustrated !! I'll be praying that you heal soon, and that's it's nothing you will have to deal with long term. Sometimes our bodies just need a break... emoticon

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