Le Verdict: Still Not a Stress Fracture (we hope!)

Good evening from a blustery and cool Chicago!

Tonight I had my real physical therapy appointment (two weeks ago was just an assessment). I am still having a lot of pain in my right hip, and after my 16-miler it seemed to spread to my left leg as well. Yesterday was especially worrisome to me – I really couldn’t walk until I took some Advil.

I am just scared to death of this being a stress fracture, because from everything I’ve read that requires an intense and prolonged recovery process, and would certainly mean I’d be out of training. But after a lot of prodding around tonight, the PT guy (we will call him Josh…since that is his name) said he is sticking to his initial assessment: it’s a hip strain, not a fracture, and it’s going to require a lot of strengthening of my muscles, but nothing drastic. I asked specifically about running and he said that I can keep going as long as I’m not in intense pain (like a “3” on a scale of 1-10 would be okay, anything beyond that not so good). He also said to focus on my weekend long runs and not to worry too much if I need to skip a weekday run here and there. I’d estimate I spent about a half hour with him, first doing some simple movements and then getting a deep tissue massage, and then another half hour with his assistant, doing various strength-building movements that I can do at home.

So with that I am planning on doing my normal 4-mile run tomorrow morning and see how it goes. One thing Josh said was that taking ibuprofen before a run isn’t necessarily the best idea – as he explained it, your body pumps sodium and potassium during a run, and the pain medication interferes with that. So if it’s just a matter of feeling some discomfort during the day and wanting a bit of relief, I can take the pills, but for running I should try to stay away from them. Message received!

One thing I really like about Josh is that he’s a real runner and very much understands why this is so important to me. At this point…I just really, really, really want to see this through. I feel like I should make a deal – get me through this marathon and I promise I’ll quit distance running as soon as it’s over. Just let me cross the finish line and I won’t pursue anything of this magnitude again!

Keep your fingers crossed for me, please! Hopefully tomorrow I’ll be able to write about a nice morning run.

Have a great evening!

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