I went for a lunch run yesterday and my left hamstring started hurting, more than random aches and pains or lingering soreness. The pain while not that bad did not subside and I shut down the run after 0.3 of a mile.
It was the same hamstring I hurt two years ago on the treadmill, though I’m not totally sure if it’s the same spot or related to the same injury.
It certainly isn’t anywhere near as bad as that injury, in which I felt a pop and the pain was immediate. I can also walk fine, and in fact I can even jump with no pain. It’s only when I attempt to run do I feel it at all. It’s a dull but slight ache and when I do feel it it’s high, near the buttock.
As I did when I got hurt two years ago, I tested multiple cross training machines at the gym to see what I could do without pain, and it turns out I could use everything I tried with no problem: The rowing machine, the elliptical, the spin bike. (I also strength trained, though that was all upper body and core work.)
I still feel hamstring pain this morning, though a bit less so than yesterday, and it’s my hope a few easy days will resolve the issue. In my experience, total days off don’t help as much as continuing to train however I can, as the bloodflow is important to spurring recovery, not to mention being able to maintain aerobic and whatever neuromuscular fitness I can.
I won’t run today, and if feeling better I will attempt light jogging tomorrow (a brief test at home this morning found I could do that pain free, but I’ll give running a rest instead of chancing it today).
Today, I’m going to give the elliptical 45-60 minutes, and that’s going to be a workout as I found my 20 minutes on it yesterday a bit of a challenge. But again, I felt no pain on the elliptical, so that’s going to be the trainer of choice for now. And maybe sustained training with the different whole-body motion will provide some sort of breakthrough once I’ve returned to normal.
If it lingers or doesn’t fully improve before Thursday, I may consider cancelling this weekend’s road trip since the goal of that trip was to run.
My hope is that this isn’t a cumulative stress reaction, that I just unduly tweaked something while out running at lunch, or perhaps aggravated something tweaked during Saturday’s long workout… an isolated incident.
Rest and recovery has not been an issue. As mentioned yesterday, I’m sleeping much better lately, and recent nutrition has been more consistent and supportive. I slept well last night.
As usual, I am not taking any NSAIDs or drugs to deal with any pain as it won’t help with recovery, and feeling any pain is important feedback.
I also have over 14 weeks until Indy, so it’s not like if I must take a break for a week that it would derail anything. But, if I can cross train through this to stay aerobically fit and progress, then I will do that however much I reasonably can.
Hopefully, in a few days of work and rest, this is all a moot point.