Tuesday, November 23, 2010

R.I.C.E - How do you elevate a glute?

I've been doing so well lately.  Setting a half-mary PR on the 14th, maintaing my miles during the week, alternating between speed/tempo work and recovery runs - I've been doing all that I can to stay healthy.

Which is why I'm totally bummed out.  On Sunday's long run - goal was 16 miles with the last three at sub-8:15, nothing too extreme - I came up lame at mile 11.5.  Up until that point, I was having no problems at all.  No tightness, soreness - nothing.  Everything was good.  We were maintaining a pretty consistent 8:30/mile pace and really enjoying being outside.  And then...BAM.  Just like that.  I felt like I had been shot in the butt.  My left glute seized up and I felt like I couldn't take another step.

What had I done?  What had I not done properly to see that this wouldn't happen?  My emotional response was very unsettling, too.  I can counsel/coach others through injury and lay-offs, but, I couldn't wipe the disappointment and frustration from my face. 

After getting home and talking it out, I began to feel a little better.  I knew that I had to R.I.C.E.  But, I had/have no idea how to elevate a glute.  If anyone has some insight, I'd love to know.  In addition, I've taken to some serious stretching and foam rolling.  I've also been working hard at the Pigeon Pose.  This, like the foam roller, doesn't feel great while you're doing it, but, I swear, the feeling when you're back on your feet is total relief.

So, I'm taking a few days off.  I'm on a stretch/foam roll/pseudo yoga prescription until at least Thanksgiving morning.  I know that missing accruing some mileage my ever so slightly hinder my performance, it is nothing compared to what trying to run through an injury will do.

Wish me luck!  Also, if you have any pointers on how to remedy this strain, let me know.  And yes, I expect all the "pain in the ass" comments that you all will bring...

Happy Thanksgiving!


  1. For a pain in the ass, I find that lying on my back, crossing one foot over the other, then pulling on the non-crossed leg towards my chest is helpful.

  2. Not sure how to elevate a glute! I also love the Pigeon Pose - after I have done it! ICE ICE ICE too. You know what else, get a tennis ball and get on the floor, and find the problem spot...It has really helped me.

  3. Icing may not be the best idea. Dr. Gabe Mirkin, the father of R.I.C.E., now says that ice delays healing (http://drmirkin.blogspot.com/2010/11/ice-delays-recovery-from-injuries.html). Foam rolling is a good idea, but a standard roller doesn't get deep enough into the glute. Try this one: www.rumbleroller.com.

  4. Kovas and Caratunk hit the nail on the head. I had this same thing happen to me and I do the pigeon pose, the tennis ball, the lay-down cross over pull, and the pretend you are sitting in a chair with you leg crossed over and push your knee down so that it stretches that area.

    In addition to that I work the Superman. I lay on the ground on my stomach and raise one hand for 10 seconds, then the other, then 1 leg, then the next. At that point I raise all 4 for :30 then do it all over again.

    In speaking with my coach she suggested it could be from a lack of strength in my back. I did this everyday for about a month and I have no issues. I now do it just about every day I run (so that works out to 3-4x per week) and still feel great.

    Get well soon.