I haven't tried massage yet, but I probably should since my leg feels so tight. how'd your run go?
I decided to go for 7 instead of 8 since I'm just starting back up again. I ran it on the same flat path that always gave me problems before. I made it through the run without any incident, and picked it up the last mile to 6:30 pace. There was a little awkwardness early on in my left leg, but no major muscle control issues. I don't think there's any way I could have done this run 2 months ago without having a problem, so I am encouraged. I won't say I'm cured until I attempt a threshold run in a week or two, but this is definitely a good start.
I have another appointment with the massage therapist on Monday. He feels very confident that he fixed the problem, but said it would be beneficial to have one more appointment to ensure that my spine is straightened out - apparently the middle portion of my spine was angled to the right. This was probably a compensation for my high left hip.
Have you worked on any strengthening exercises?
That's great to hear! Keep us all updated on how your progress goes.
I've been doing some of the exercises on the egoscue website, but haven't noticed a difference yet. It's probably way too early to tell anyways. After taking 3 weeks off completely, I've been running about 5 miles a day for the past week and a half. The past couple of nights I've noticed my leg doesn't feel quite as tight, but I still am forced to stop nonetheless. It's usually 2-3 times in the last 10-15 mins of the run now. My legs feel incredibly weak when I land and push off, yet I'm able to lift a decent amount with my legs in the gym.
What areas did your massage therapist work on? I'm considering massage therapy or ART but I don't really know where to even begin with that.
i cant find the exercises on the egoscue site?
I do have a leg length discrepancy...I did decent mileage, many long tempo runs too...I was only doing around 32-33 for 10K, then all of a sudden basically, I went up to 39 minutes and a limp. I just lost coordination in my right leg. I have zero flexibility, and that is probably my problem.
I took years off of running, gave up, and the problem is still there, I guess. I am now fat and old and only running around 41 minutes for 10K now. My brain still thinks I can PR, but I cannot race faster than I do tempo runs. I am the gimper, the limper, the lucky lucky you guy.
Try stretching, or get lucky with orthotics...avoid chiropractors and the like. That is my advice. Or go to trail running if nothing works. I can run trails without problems, but a sustained hard run is impossible after 4 miles or so as I gimp along.
The therapist worked mostly in my lower back area, particularly the sacrum. He found a number of painful spots which he said were muscle spasms that were pulling things out of alignment. I also had a very painful spot in my left glute. I'd like to give him credit for my improvement, but on the other hand I did take 7+ weeks off from running and started lifting weights, so I don't know what's helping the most. As long as I can get back to normal, I guess it doesn't matter.
I tried ART with two different sports chiros and it did absolutely nothing for me. I had over 20 appointments. I spoke to someone offline who went to see the founder of ART (Mike Leahy)for this condition and he did not help at all. My sports chiro said that if Mike Leahy can't fix it, then you know ART won't help. My advice is to try something else.
What's the difference between ART and massage therapy? My lower back has been bothering me for quite some time now, so maybe I have something similar going on. I don't feel it when I try to run though.
I think the end result is supposed to be the same. ART is a soft tissue technique that involves applying pressure to a certain spot while the therapist tells you to move in a certain direction, or you are on a moving table. It can be used to breakup scar tissue or release spasms. I guess it's only as good as the person that is doing the treatment. Both chiropractors and massage therapists can be trained in ART, but I had no luck with the ART chiropractors that I went to.
People, stop agonising over the various types of therapies and just go out and RUN!
If u feel that yr case is really super serious then I'd say GO TO THE TRACK AND RUN!
Yes. The simplest, most direct cure is running itself. But Make sure you mk RIGHT TURNS/CLOCKWISE DIRECTION, be it on track or grass feld or road/pavement loop courses.
I know I mentioned this in an earlier post, but I think I need to re-emphasise here that the way to heal the lack of coordination is to re-train yr bad leg to move in a different pattern. When u run only counterclockwise turns u have been cutting off blood flow, compresing nerves, resulting in muscular distrophy and structural misalignment.
When u then try to run on flat strght roads/pavement, yr bad leg will go awry bec it has been trained to constantly step TO THE LEFT, TWISTING INWARDS FIRST THEN OUTWARDS LATERALLY/DIAGONALLY WITH TOES POINTING, LANDING AND PUSHING OFF DIAGONALLY. Over time this has not only overdeveloped and underdeveloped different muscles, IT HAS ALSO CREATED AN INGRAINED MUSCLE-MEMORY AND NEUROMUSCULAR PROGRAMMING FR THE SUB-CONSCIOUS TO EXPECT AND TO PERFORM ONLY THAT 'TWISTING' AND 'ROTATING' MOTION THAT THE INNER LEG HAS TO DO WHEN NEGOTIATING TRACK/LOOP CURVES/TURNS.
What I mean to say is: this loss of coordination is as much a NEUROMUSCULAR phenomenon as it is a structural misalignment and imbalance problem!
Therefore, u can practice all that stuff fr egoscue.com, fr PTs, from ART, fr pilates, core strength training, single-leg training,etc and whatever else the have out there, BUT IF U DO NOT CONSCIOUSLY AND CONSCIENTIOUSLY 'RE-PROGRAMME' YOUR BODY TO MOVE DIFFERENTLY WHEN U R RUNNING, U WILL KEP ON HAVING THAT UNCOORDINATED LEG AFTER HAVING SPENT MILLIONS OF DOLLARS AND THOUSANDS OF HOURS IN THERAPY.
Most people testify that they run relatively ok on softer, uneven terrain, but would become symptomatic once they run track or relatively flat ground. Why is this so?
Because softer terrain like trails and dirt GIVE EASILY, and so when you land with yr feet, the grd allows u to negotiate the imbalances in a more accomodating manner. That is, the GROUDS 'SHIFTS' according to yr movement patterns, magnitude of force applied, and uneven distribution of body weight.
If anything, running on soft grd MASKS THE PROBLEM. It it still good for those who r still suffering but yet desire to continue some running. But if u want to get healed, staying on softer terrain will not do it.
The root cause of the problem is simultaneously the BEST CURE. The most direct and fastest way to change yr skewed stride pattern is to GO IN REVERSE OF WHAT U HAVE INITIALLY PROGRAMMED.By this I mean that if u got the problem by doing too much left turning on track, u start altering (until u r asymptomatic) yr workouts by doing some or all of yr track work making right turns.
What am I saying here? GO BACK TO TRAINING ALREADY!
But this time do things differently.
To continue resting will not help, as Marty Moose has already testified in his own case. Why? Because u r still leaving that neuromuscular pattern unchanged!
U need to 'teach' yr bad leg that not only can it negotiate left turns, it can do right turns also! By including clockwise direction turns, u r also developing in the most direct and specific manner the underdeveloped muscles on both legs as a result of counterclockwise turns. The degree of body 'twisting' and 'leaning' and pelvic rotation that accompanies that movement in curve running can never be duplicated in any correctional exercise, static or dynamic.
To counter the effects of excessive body lean while making left turns, u have to use yr body to perform something that directly counteracts that motion in every aspect: muscular exertion, structural angle, joint flexion, the varying degree(s) of stress/pressure applied and/or experienced by each body part engaged in the activity.
What better and more specific way than the act of running itself?
This is actually not a complicated problem. All too many 'running injuries' r caused by excessive motion in a perferred direction/angle. But what do we do when we get hurt? We treat the SYMPTOMS and disregard the CAUSE. All too many doctors r guilty of this, experts or not.
I have successfully 'treated' others and myself by this simple change of training. Its not rocket science, people. Not even medical science. ITS COMMON SENSE!
So please, I don't want to see any more people continue in frustration. I've seen enough already, and myself have suffered for far too long needlessly.
This 'injury' is simply the body's way of telling us we have gone to an extreme and is intended for us to return to balance. Just heed yr body's signal and CHANGE YOUR TRAINING!
If u r part of the track team and have been laying off as a result of this condition, GO BACK TO TRAINING WITH THE GUYS IMMEDIATELY!
However, do request that yr coach/teacher allow u to run some of your track reps in the clockwise direction. I'll bet u that after only one session you will start to feel the difference.
Thanks for providing this idea.
I have considered this, and probably will still give it a try, but my symptoms appear to be different than others on here because most of the time, both of my legs are affected and it starts immediately when I run. Maybe I should run in a clockwise circle as to avoid any straights at all.
As for my post a few pages ago, i'm talking about a situation without disease (which i still think is the vast majority).
Its a circular problem:
Movement influences condition (muscle stength / balance / flexibility etc),
Condition influences movement,
Movement influences condition,
and so on.
You guys been having trouble for some time have been spiralling downwards. You need to turn it around and start spirally upwards. That will involve working on both aspects (movement and condition) - ignoring either will hold back your progress.
If you've been spiralling downwards for years, be prepared
for it to take 1 year+ to reverse your problems. You want to get back to a stage where your 'natural' movement is a correct one - i don't think there are any quick fixes to reverse long term problems.
Thanks for your input. Interestingly enough, during the height of my problem, I noticed that I could last a lot longer on the track if I ran clockwise and I actually felt good on the turns. After I became convinced that track running, particularly counterclockwise running caused my problem, I decided to avoid the track completely. Just like you said, running on trails masked the problem but it never fixed it.
I'll start to incorporate clockwise reps in my training.
i cant find the exercises on the egoscue site?
go to egoscue.com
click on My Egoscue
register (if you haven't already)
once you register and get in, you will find:
Free Menu Updates
You can click on the posture analysis and see which ones looks closest to your condition.
There are three menus under each condition:
Pain Free (do these if you are in lots of pain)
Office Menu (things to do away from home)
Active (more active exercises to do once you are pain free)
The exercises are designed to get the body firing equally on both sides, up and down, etc. They are very effective and take time, and should be continued for runners who are always creating an imbalance.
I think the person on this thread who talks about getting on the track and running the opposite direction is very insightful and this would also wbe beneficial.
What I mean to say is: this loss of coordination is as much a NEUROMUSCULAR phenomenon as it is a structural misalignment and imbalance problem!
this statement is so true. Your brain will have to make the adjustment over time - it is your brain telling your leg, back, foot what to do, brain and nerves need to be retrained.
I have had this problem since fall 2002. I can relate to a lot of symptoms posted on this thread. Over the past four years I have been able to analyze what happens and can clearly identify what I feel, but not how to fix it. I lose muscle coordination on my left side. I get foot splay and cramping where my fibula inserts into my ankle joint as well as where the fibula connects in the knee joint. The cramping spreads across the top of my midfoot. Like another poster, this eventually leads to a sort of hot spot/cramping in my left hamstring. Never really have any pain, but lots of frustration. The rougher the trail the better--- symptoms are the worst on flat roads and the track. A former coach I had at the time I first noticed the problem told me, essentially, it was in my head; so, reading all of your stories makes me feel better, that there are other people out there with this same real problem.
Yes, I've seen one trainer in the past who identified: an SI joint problem, hip alignment issues, that my left hip is anteriorally rotated and over an inch lower than the right, that my left leg is sort of "locked" up into my pelvis (manipulation would pull it down, but it would never "stay"), and that my left glut does not fire properly. I do have very minor scoliosis--- an S curve, but I was told than any curves less than 18' are not significant and of no real concern. (but for a high-mileage distance runner???)
Again, after dealing with it for 4 years and having plenty of time to analyze what I feel when I run, this is my summation: My left glut does not fire properly for some reason. My hamstring is then asked to do more work than it should to make up for the glut. The hamstring can only do so much and then fatigues. The calf and small intrinsic muscles of the foot take over, but they are much smaller than the large hamstring. They fatigue, my foot splays, I get cramping at both ends of my fibula, and my leg spasms.
So I've got all this information and I'm at the point I just want it fixed. Can anyone out there please help me? I need to find a way to level my hips back into proper alignment so that it stays.
Two words: sacro wedgy.
I have used it just 4 days and it is really working!My lef glute didn´t fire before,but now it starts to do its job.
Thanks for the suggestion! I had checked out that product's website before but didn't buy. I'll give it a try now though. Why not at this point??? Cheaper than another medical appt that will go probably go nowhere just like all the others from the past 4 years...
Miss Osage County,
Have u tried reading the info given by some of the posters on this thread? Maybe some of those exercises they suggested will help.
Also, have u read my last post? U might want to consider what I have written and try out what I have suggested.
Your case is almost DEFINITELY a case of over-running the track curves.
Yes, I have read this entire thread, including your posts. I read all I can to try to figure out what's going on with my left leg, including threads like this on Letsrun. I thank you for posting and appreciate the opportunity to read your thoughts on the subject, but I don't agree with many of them.
I already run track reps clockwise, thank you. I believe my injury is not training related; continuing to train with the problem has probably made it worse by causing other compensation issues, but didn't cause it. It first began happening shortly after 3 successive events: straining my piriformis after doing my first long run in the slippery snow (2 hrs), falling hard on my left hip after slipping on black ice, and falling hard on my left hip while (stupid, yes) standing on a vertically stacked cinder block swinging a sledge hammer to knock out the ceiling slats on a house I was rehabbing.
Running reps on a track has always been a very small part of my training. Even during college track season as a long distance specialist, many of my quality sessions were away from the track on dirt and paved paths. Also, my coach never overraced me where he would make me run multiple events on the track every meet. So, I don't feel like I spent a lot of time in college just running circles on the track. My loss of coordination in my leg problem started one year after college. I was unable to run for half of that year due to the above mentioned piriformis injury; since I wasn't running at all, I certainly wasn't running in a counterclockwise direction on the track.
I do have common sense. I also have an anteriorally rotated left pelvis that is 16degrees lower than the right side, and a left glut that does not fire properly. My common sense tells me that there's somebody out there that has heard of a similar situation and rather than telling me to just "go back to training already", they'll be able to tell me how to strengthen and rehab my hip so that it's level again. Then, when I do just "go back to training already", I will not be training with a limp.
Miss Osage County
I fully realise that not all cases of loss of coordination in the leg r due to track running in counterclockwise direction. I'm sure I mentioned that in my earliest post in this thread.
Certainly for yr case I wouldn't be so blase as to say "go back to training already!" as U r not training much on track. I guess all posters who read any post shd exercise discretion as to which specific statements/information apply or doesn't apply to their own unique situation(s)
Of course, just to check all bases, have u taken note of some of the training routes u have used prior to those incidents that led to yr leg problems? Some seemingly 'flat' roads or pavements r actually quite slanted and this can create imbalances over time.
I also mentioned b4 that even running loop courses on cross country/softer terrain making essentially the same directional turns can also create leg problems over time.(Esp if the volume at wh u perform them far outnumbers the number of clockwise track reps u do)
Even tho u may have laid off due to that piriformis injury, U must understand that resolving the muscular imbalances alone will not change anything. I gather that u r already doing some forms of single leg strenthening? Probably helps somewhat but doesn't change those angular tilts/rotations, does it?
How abt any other games/sports u play? Either recently or much younger? Golf? Basketball?, Soccer? Tennis? Bowling? etc etc. Any incidents of past aggravation/injury? It may not have directly led to yr current problem but it could have led to some form of compensation subconsciously. I'm sure u, having ample discretion and common sense, can track bk down memory lane to locate any such occurrences.
Its entirely possible that all yr problems r caused by those specific incidents u mentioned esp those involving falling on yr hip. But if all the medical specialists u have consulted could not help u find a complete cure, and since this happened when u were reasonably 'older' rather than when u were a teenager or younger, then I would have to say that this is something wh can only be resolved by locating the ACTUAL ROOT CAUSE.
If we guess that falling on yr hip caused the problem, and u have been to the chiropractors/PTs and they could not sort out that situation, then I'd say that we can safely rule that one out.
In fact, I'd say that THE FALLS U TOOK AND THE SLEDGEHAMMER INCIDENT R CONSEQUENCES OF YR IMBALANCE/COORDINATIONAL PROBLEMS, RATHER THAN THE CAUSES.The imbalance could have occurred unknowingly even b4 u hurt yr hip, and these incidents r a way of alerting u to the hidden problem in yr left side. (God has His ways of getting thro to us u know....)
The reason why I suggested the clockwise track running to u earlier is bec yr symptoms r 100% identical to mine. I, too, tried all cures/professional help to no avail. I, too, have had little incidents along the way that help point to the root problem, altho I misunderstood them to be the causes at the time and so tried to 'treat the symptoms', to no avail either.
I am not at all comfortable promoting this clockwise track running thing bec it too can be abused and cause similar problems. However, the sad truth is that many people need to do just that, including myself. And I am today totally asymptomatic.
Even tho u might have reated due to the piriformis problem, I would venture to say that if we can rule out the above falling/sledgehammer incidents, and if we can rule out other sports-related problems, YOUR CASE IS STILL MOST LIKELY DUE TO COUNTERCLOCKWISE RUNNING.
I mentioned earlier that the problem is very much NEUROMUSCULAR as it is structural. Even tho u have rested long, THE SET NEUROMUSCULAR PATTERN IS STILL UNCHANGED.
U might argue that yr coach never overraced u on the track and that u rarely run track reps. U might say that u do perform clockwise runs. However, just by yr description of the specific angular tilts in yr left hip, I would 100% say that it is due to counterclockwise running in excess, track or dirt/mud paths.
I would say that u have only done some clockwise reps and not very often, and that in total, yr counterclockwise running (be they fast reps or just steady/easy runs) in yr athletic-scholastic days still far outnumber yr clockwise running. Yr falls in the snow and fr the cinder block either only REVEALED those long ingrained neuromuscular patterns and imbalances, or they aggravated what ALREADY EXISTS.
If what u say abt u running clockwise track reps currently is true (am I interpreting what u wrote correctly?), then I'd say that maybe u ought to take this off track also, even when u run easy/steady/tempo, till the problem resolves. It could just be a matter of the volume and frequency and PERCENTAGE at wh u perform yr runs/reps in either direction.
I know how u must be feeling right now, bec I was there-for a long long time. The frustration can be all consuming bec here is one more mr know-it-all trying to sell his 'magic cure' to u, after numerous trained pros have disappointed u, and meanwhile u can't do what u love, wh is to run problem-free. So I'm not trying here to defend my suggestions and to 'win' any argument, u know.If I am proven wrong and u get healed....HALLELUJAH PRAISE GOD!
For specific strengthning exercises, if u have tried what all the fellas have posted here, and if u have tried to strengthen yr legs individually, and still u r not getting better, then I still suggest that u persevere w the clockwise running (while not abandoning any of yr common sense and overdoing it, of course....)
All the best