August 17, 2011

My Butt Doesn't Hurt!!!

Funny title for a blog post perhaps, but it's true and I'm really ecstatic about it: my butt doesn't hurt. I can't remember the last time I didn't feel a sharp pain running from my right glute down through my hamstring. Last week, I learned that the pain has been a result of some major tendonitis in my hamstring and I've been following my PT's instructions down to a T. She must be brilliant because it seems to be working! I've been doing my exercises, training on the elliptical (12 miles on Sunday as my long "run"), swimming, strenghening my core and stretching lightly instead of trying to tear my muscles apart. Krista (my PT deserves a name) was really happy with my progress Monday evening and started working out the pain in my tush. Mid appointment, it started to disappear. I was shocked. I forgot what it felt like to not be in pain. When I walked to the bus to get home that night, and then went for a swim, I did my best not to aggravate my right glute... and a few days later, it still feels pretty awesome. Yay for my right butt cheek!

My PT experience, in fact this entire experience, thus far has me thinking about my body and my control over it. The night I received my MRI results was a horrible night and I remember thinking "I'm angry at my body. My body let me down." The next day, I was on the phone with G and told him how I felt. His response? "Don't you think maybe you let your body down?" And I realized he had a point. For months my body was telling me to stop and take care of it; it was screaming "I'm in pain!!!" but I ignored it's pleading and kept running, kickboxing, and a gazillion other activities that were overworking my muscles. Finally, enough was enough, and my right leg refused to work. I tried to run but it wouldn't move without excrutiating pain. And now my dream of running the NYC Marathon this year might be ruined because I didn't listen to my body.

Baker tweeted these words of wisdom and I can only hope that folks who needed to see the message, saw it and listened.
I wish someone had tweeted this message months ago but let's be honest, I probably wouldn't have listened anyway. So I'm going to take this opportunity to ask, beg, plead, insist that if you are in pain, please listen to your body and don't let it down. Rest. And if that doesn't help, go to a doctor and get it checked out. And if that doesn't help, take it a step further and get an MRI. I currently have two friends who didn't listen to their bodies either. One is now nursing a hip fracture, the other her shin. One missed her goal half marathon for this summer, the other is in the same boat as me for NYCM.

And this message goes to everyone, whether you're a runner, a cyclist or just love to sit on your butt, watch TV and eat Cheetos. Two years ago, a person whom I cared about very much, had lower back pain that wouldn't go away. He thought it was a sports injury and for weeks he rested and nursed the injury. It wouldn't go away. His brother insisted he get an MRI, assuming he had herniated discs. He didn't. He had multiple tumors in his kidneys, cancer that had already spread to his bones was causing his lower back pain. He passed away 11 months later, the day after his 41st birthday. His disease was silent until it was too late. But you never know when you might find something in time, might be able to save yours or someone else's life by a visit to the doctor when you're body is telling you something isn't right. Please people, listen.

I accompanied G to an event on a boat last night and took this beautiful picture of the Statue of Liberty just after the sun had set. I commented on how beautiful it looked and G said it reminded him of marathon morning, taking the ferry to Staten Island the morning of the race. I hope the next time I'm this close to Lady Liberty is on the Staten Island ferry on November 6th, 2011. We'll see...


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