|How my pelvis feels right now.....|
But....she did have this Occasional Pain in her lower back....that sometimes shot down deep into her bottom...and even sometimes down her hamstrings...especially on the left side. Since she'd had it for more than five years, though, she was almost used to it. She didn't talk about it (except to her husband some mornings when the act of climbing out of bed made her feel 90 years old).
Then one Saturday in late January, after she tried to up the intensity of her core workout just a little teensy bit, the Occasional Pain spoke to her. "You know," it said, "I've been here for five years, whispering softly because I'm polite that way, but all you do is ignore me. You ignored me when I asked you not to perch those kids on that left hip, even when they were getting heavier. You ignored me when I told you, 'Not THAT core workout.' You ignored me when I asked you to maybe please not run so much on concrete. You're still ignoring me. So now...I'm gonna YELL at you."
Trying to be respectful, she took two days off running and skipped her weight training class. But the Occasional Pain had had it with her. It refused to go away. She ran easy. She foam rolled. She carried a tennis ball in her purse and sat on it at inappropriate times, like at work.
To no avail.
So she did the last thing she could think of to placate the Pain (which a little over a week later was no longer Occasional).
She went in to see her doctor at Boulder Center for Sports Medicine. The same doctor who had saved her foot. Who had been disappointed in a 2:50 marathon in Chicago last year.
Inside the exam room she donned a pair of voluminously unflattering hospital shorts. Her doctor asked her lots of questions. She mentioned her twin pregnancy, her C-section, carrying babies and toddlers around on her left hip, and how each and every time she had tried to focus on her core the Pain had come back.
"Does it hurt when you run?" he asked.
"Sometimes," she admitted. Oh, how she hated saying that out loud!
Her doctor then had her stretch out on the exam table. He manipulated her legs and hips and back. He said her left leg appeared to be a bit longer than her right (she had no idea) and that her "high hamstrings" were very tight--especially on the left.
He looked at her training plan for the Spring of Speed. He told her it was good things weren't going to ramp up too quickly.
He prescribed six weeks of bi-weekly massage (she could almost feel the Pain cheering)....and six weeks of something called "dry needling" (neither she nor the Pain were so sure about that). He gave her a link to a different core workout and stretching routine.
He didn't tell her not to run.
In fact, he told her she will probably be able to run faster once she deals with the Pain.
If that's the case, she doesn't care how many needles it takes, dry or wet.
She's going to turn that Occasional Pain into a Distant Memory.