Saturday, June 15, 2013

SI Joint Issues

So I went to the Chiropractor this week about the pain in my hip and back.  The issue is on the right side and I would say that I'm experiencing my first injury.  I've been EXTREMELY fortunate through the years.  Fortunate, but I've also been cautious and worked hard to prevent injuries.  (weights focused on injury prevention and run strength, yoga, ice, hard days/easy days, rotating & replacing shoes often, etc)

In Nov. 2009, I fell down on some concrete that I thought was dry, but it was slippery wet.  I did a seat-drop.  It was a hard fall, but the next day, I thought I was ok.  I continued with my training.  A couple of weeks later, I had a half marathon.  I raced for,  and achieved a PR that day, but as soon as I stopped running that day,  I could barely walk.  Oh, and by the way, this was the same year I BQ'ed the first time, so the goal became to proceed cautiously and make it to the start-line at Boston.   I went to the chiropractor a few times, iced, iced, iced and proceeded with much caution.    I did make it to the start line of Boston 2010 and ended up running a good race.   After Boston 2010, I took a month off to be SURE the hip nag was totally healed.    I haven't had any more issues with my hip until 10 days ago.

I'm not sure what has caused the hip issue this time.   I've been on low mileage and low intensity since Boston 2013 earlier this spring.  I've been slowly building my mileage back leading up to the start of my training for the Huntsville, UT marathon, Sept 2013.    Leading up to the injury, I had Tues. off, Wed was an hour long bike ride, and Thurs was a 12 mile run (had worked up from 6, 8, 10, several weeks prior).   At this point, I have no idea if it was the biking, the shoes, or what?????  I decided to go to the chiropractor because that seemed to help when I had the hip nag in 2010.

This time,  the pain is different than 2009/2010, but it is the same hip.  The chiropractor thinks I have a SI joint issue going on.  Through the years,  I've heard about ALL types of run injuries that friends have endured, but I've never heard of the SI joint injury.   Of course I google SI joint injury as soon as I make it home.   I was surprised when Meggan's blog came up in my search.   I've followed Meggan's blog for a couple of years, and have read about her ongoing hip issue, but I missed the blogs specifically about the SI joint.   You can read some great info about it here.  ( If you enjoy following hard working, highly talented,  and passionate runners,  be sure to check out her blog.)

This week the hip has not improved, in fact, it's worse than initially.  The last 2 days, I've had pain when walking.  I'm not sure my path going forward,  other than REST, which is the common recommendation from my quick SI Joint research.  I'm not sure if I should continue with  chiropractor care because I'm not sure if the SI joint issue is something that a chiropractor commonly deals with. ??? (Meggan also mentions chiropractic care has not helped her SI issue when she tried it in the past)    I'm on a limited budget so unfortunately, doctors, MRIs, physical therapists, massages, etc.  will not be my first plan of action.    So, rest and Ibuprofen will be my immediate plan of action.  This plan may change at any time with additional input, thought, time, etc.

In the mean time, I've been surprisingly relaxed with this issue.  Looking back, I know I did everything possible to avoid injuries, and there is comfort in knowing I didn't do something careless to cause this issue.  Looking forward,  I'm staying positive and taking the hip issue day by day.  I've been doing what I can with arm weights and core work, but even those things are somewhat limited in trying to make sure I'm not adding additional stress to my hip.  Currently, walking, running, elliptical, and biking are all off the table.  Next I will try rowing, but I'm not sure if that will work either.  I went to the gym yesterday, but I had taken Ibuprofen, so I didn't try the rowing.  I'm extra cautious when taking Ibuprofen because of the numbing effect of the drug.  I do not want to do further damage to the hip/back issue.  I will try the rowing on Monday and I will skip the Ibuprofen before going to the gym.  Water running may be another avenue, but again, I'm on a limited budget so that's not my first choice.  As time goes on, I will be more willing to look at the expensive options, but for now I'm opting for time and rest.  On the positive side, I went to my regular yoga class this week and I didn't feel the hip or back at all, so for now, yoga is a yes. 

Running has been such a HUGE part of my life.  You probably thought, as did I, that I would be crushed if running was taken out of my life?  I'm shocked and amazed that I've quickly realized that I will be FINE.  No matter what my new path holds, I'm ready for it !  Yes, I will have emotional ups and downs as I move through this issue, but I realize, I'm STRONG, and I will be ok,  no matter what.  That's a comforting feeling !   In the mean time, I will continue to read your blogs about your run adventures.   Happy Running !      


Gracie said...

Yes, Meggan is so talented, and she runs through chronic SI issues - very inspirational for me, since I have chronic osteitis pubis. I don't think SIJ dysfunction will end your running - on the contrary, I know many runners who tend to experience this injury/issue/discomfort from time to time, and are able to manage it well. Most of them have a PT they use to make sure they're on the right track in recovery (Meggan's blog post about this was very good - a professional should be able to differentiate between hyper and hypo mobility of the SIJ). But once they understand the general pathogenesis, they rely on a basic set of exercises to prevent flare ups.
I get sore around the SIJ when it's working: when it isn't, it's locked, and I get mobility in the pubic joint instead (very bad!). So I do a few exercises to keep the joint limber.
I've also used this pose on rare occasions when I really feel like my hips are not moving. If I can't get any back kick, it's a clue that mobility is impaired:

Get well and get back out there soon!

Happy Feet 26.2 said...

thanks Gracie - I appreciate the link. at first I thought you were recommending the pose at the top of the blog - ouch! ha ha

I'm sure, with time, I will be back out on the roads, in the mean time, I'm cool with it.....

Anonymous said...

Oh no, never heard about that injury. I hope you will feel better very soon and you can start exercising again. Hang in there!

Jim ... 50after40 said...

Good luck with the SI Joint Ginny. Michael has had several issues with that over the years and I know it can be a tough road. I hope you get it resolved quickly ... and I always love your positive outlook on everything. It's very inspiring!

Lisa said...

I'm clearly catching up on some blog reading. So sorry to hear of your injury. A fall like that can be so sneaky in creating issues.

I hope you're recovering and back to running soon!!

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