LONG POST ALERT - sorry
I posted back in August of 2006 on this thread. My physiatrist who is an athlete, ultimately diagnosed a hip adductor tear, abdominal strain, etc. He wanted me to try to heal conservatively rather than do surgery.
My symptoms were similar to others
"My main symptoms are pain in the right testicle, pain through the inguinal ligaments on that side as well as hip and sometimes lower right back. Frankly sometimes it can go up and down my whole right side. I also have some pain up and down the shaft of my penis on the right side that feels like a pulling sensation. . . ."
Certainly, the inguinal nerve was involved given the pain radiating into my penis and what felt like my kidneys. I had perineum pain and a pressure sensation in the pubic area.
At the onset in May, the pain was significant, but with "reduced" running" - 3 times per week - the pain became chronic, low grade, but unrelenting. All imaging testing was negative (I seriously thought I had some sort of cancer) so, on the bright side that workup was negative.
ANYWAY - physical therapy in August was too painful and made my hip adductors tighter. So, I stopped. I started cycling which did not seem to effect my symptoms. But, I continued to have low grade constant symptoms.
Finally, I stopped running completely on December 24 after a five mile run with my wife caused a bad flare up of symptoms. So, on the advise of my physiatrist, I stopped doing any core exercises and any physical activity, I just wanted it to calm down
I didn't do anything (other than drink beer and gain weight) for 8 weeks. The symptoms subsided. I ran one day, and they came back. I took another week off and slowly returned to bicycling on the trainer - no problems. In January, I added swimming. Since then, I've averaged swimming 2 days per week. At first, I couldn't even kick without symptoms, but now I can do kick drills without symptoms.
I also have averaged (built up to) 4 days a week cycling a minimum of 25 miles up to 65 with no symptoms at a good clip (17 - 25 mph on flats). No symptoms.
I've run twice in May - 4 miles and 5.5 miles (8 minute pace). What I've noticed is that, at the end of the run, my adductors are slightly sore, and my lower abdomen feels sligtly strained, but that goes away quickly.
What does this mean? I think taking 5 months off from running has enabled me to heal significantly. I have no pain doing activities of daily living. I can rake my lawn, and haul dirt in a wheelbarrow. I needed to do that since I couldn't rake at all in the fall. So, I'm certainly much better, and can be very active.
I've been given the green light for some light core strengthening (Yoga - NOT pilates). I'm slowly adding some sit ups. All in all, I feel stronger.
So, yes, rest has been an excellent tool for me; however, I don't know if I'll ever run 6 days a week again.