Sunday, September 5, 2010

8 miles and sciatic neve

This morning Jay and I got up and ran 8 miles. We are running the Army Ten Miler (ATM) in October and have yet to run over 4 miles. Oops! I was determined to get our butts in gear (it was my main goal for the weekend).

It is a beautiful day in DC! We started our run around 9 a.m. and it was cool (Is fall on its way?) creating the perfect running conditions. We tried a new route on a trail near our apartment and then down into Del Ray. Jay has never been to Del Ray before and I have never been there in the day (let alone a Saturday). It is such a cute area. There were artist and farmer's markets and people were everywhere, walking, talking, drinking coffee, running and biking.

We did walk pieces here and there because I was having muscle pain (Jay thinks it has to do with a tight muscle pinching my sciatic nerve - more to come on that). The best part about living with and dating a physical therapy student is when something hurts, he usually knows how to fix it. On the run whenever I felt pain we would stop, stretch and continue on our way. For example...

I feel weakness, numbness and/or tightening in one leg.

What is causing this?
Weakness, numbness and tightening of the leg is usually caused by the compression of the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve runs down the side of your leg. This pain, weakness, numbness or tightening usually starts in your hip or butt area and slowly moves down the leg to other muscles.

How do you treat or prevent this from happening?
By stretching!!

When running the simple stretch we did was:
  • Sit on a bench
  • Put one ankle (right) on your knee (left)
  • Hug your bent (right) knee with your arms
  • Lean forward into your knee and if you're up to it, pull your knee towards your chest
This stretch really helped during the run. Post-run we "stretched ourselves out". You can do all these stretches without a belt, but a belt helps you stretch further. All three stretches work on your hamstrings.

Stretch 1:
  • Lay on the floor on your back
  • Pull your knees up and have your feet flat on the floor
  • Put the belt around one foot
  • Straighten leg while holding belt (let belt out until your leg is straight)
  • You should feel this behind your leg in the hamstring region
  • Hold for 30 seconds, switch legs and repeat 2-3 times
Stretch 2:
  • In the same position as above
  • Place one ankle on your knee
  • Place both hands behind knee that is perpendicular to the floor
  • Pull forward gently
  • For an added stretch, straighten the leg you are pulling on
  • Hold for 30 seconds, switch legs and repeat 2-3 times
Stretch 3:
  • Lay flat on the floor
  • Put the belt on one foot
  • Lift one leg over the other and pull the belt using the opposite hand
  • You should really feel this one!
  • Hold for 30 seconds, switch legs and repeat 2-3 times
And for fuel?

Pre-run we each had a bowl of oatmeal (love Kirkland) and coffee an hour before leaving. Post-run jay made us eggs.

He usually has an omelet, but I love runny yolks. Thankfully he was nice enough to make me a sunny side up egg with spinach! This morning I added a slice of swiss cheese between my piece of toast and egg for some extra calcium.

And, he garnished it all by himself! The hospitality student within me loved it!!

Long weekend goal complete!

I would like to thank Jay for putting up with me and taking pictures while I stretched

What is your goal for the long weekend?