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!