Overuse or Underuse? The real reason I get hurt.

I’m once again nursing myself back from injury. I had a pretty good stretch of pain free running the past 2 years, but here I am with some searing hamstring pain and a numb foot. There is nothing wrong with my hamstring or my foot, the problem is in my back. When it comes to running injuries most people will have you believe that overuse is the primary cause of most of the time, but for me the problem is underuse, underuse of my brain. I can’t think of a single injury I have had in the past 10 years that I can’t trace back to a single bad decision.

Sprinting full speed down a mountain?
Jumping into a car for a 3 hour drive immediately following a very hard workout?
Sprinting full speed down another mountain?
All out 200’s in 3oz spikes on a dry rotted track that is basically a think sheet of plastic on top of concrete on a cold wet windy day?

Yes, Yes, Yes, and Yes.

In the past 10 years I’ve never been injured while building up fitness. It is always when I am at peak fitness and feeling invincible. That is when I cross the line from running and racing hard to acting with reckless disregard for my well being.

So it is now, at the start of the spring racing season that I find myself hurt and struggling to train. It’s been 2 and half weeks since my back locked up so badly during a recovery jog that I had to sit down on the ground to catch my breath for 5 minutes before walking back to the gym. My back is feeling much better but either I’ve herniated a disc or my muscles are so inflamed they are compressing a nerve. That nerve is sending pain down my hamstring like a hot wire, and my foot sometimes just goes numb. But on the upside I was able to do some hill repeats today and managed a total of 5.5 miles. Assuming I can still walk tomorrow I will race a 15k on March 30th. Stupid is as stupid does.



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