Monday, February 25, 2013

Pain in the Rear: A Diagnosis

(At long last...)

I finally went to see a guy about my glute issue. I asked around for recommendations to a good sports doc in the area with no luck. Corey has a good friend that's a PT but then I learned that you have to have a "prescription" from a doctor in order to see the PT. Lame. I'm a little jaded when it comes to doctors because I haven't had good experiences with most of the ones I've gone to see (uh, how about the one who tested me for arthritis? Yeah...) so I've become more reliant on raving recommendations from friends vs. doctors on my health care provider's list.

My former cross-country coach from high school suggested I see a guy whose clientele includes George Hincapie. He is a huge anatomy/kinesiology geek and my "one hour" appointment quickly turned into three while we discussed my butt and a number of rabbit trail sidetracks (like baseball shoulder injuries). I also cracked a few jokes about steroid use and he told me he gave Hincapie a hard time about steroid-induced-impotence when he last saw him.

The Diagnosis: An angry Obturator Internus, and some bursitis underneath it. Basically (in my non-anatomy-expert words) the OI is injured, inflamed and putting pressure on the bursa under it. The bursitis is being more of a diva than the OI as far as causing pain.

I have an exciting regime of "exercises" and stretches to do. I got excited because he said I could do leg exercises... and then found out he doesn't define them quite the same way I was thinking (they are even less-intense than Jane Fonda leg raises).

We ran through the stretches and exercises during my marathon appointment and I could feel those muscles working and even getting a little tired. It's been a little harder to remember how to do all of them and I am constantly referring to the handouts he gave me. The more I do them the more the area will calm down and stop irritating the bursa. I could take anti-inflammatories to help with the inflammation but I'm on methotrexate for my skin and you can't mix meth with NSAIDs.  I know fish oil can help with inflammation so I picked up a bottle (yum) to see if it will help on that front.

It's great to feel hopeful about getting better! I won't lie the exercises are boring, but hopefully with some diligence I'll be back to running and cross-fitting sooner rather than later. If it's feeling better in a few weeks I can test out running; I can't wait.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Rants and Raves

I've done a few product reviews over the past 4.5 years (!) of this blog and I have always been honest with my opinion. However, marketing companies and manufacturers don't exactly want to give you 2+ years to test a product, for understandable reasons. Now that it's been a few months (or even years in some cases) I thought I'd circle back around on some of the items and see how my thoughts have changed for better or worse.

Edibles (or something like it)
Vega bars and shakes
I still think these products are pricey, but the acai-berry bars are convenient (and tasty) and I'll sometimes buy them from Whole Foods for a work snack.

Phenom Coconut Water
I didn't like it the first time around and was crazy enough to give it another shot (at my own expense). Still didn't like it.

Cafepress Sigg water bottle
I like this water bottle, but I have a thing (personal preference) against drinking out of a stainless steel-type bottle. If anyone wants a twice-used water bottle I'd be happy to mail it your way! (Shoes not included)

Mix My Granola
I love granola. It's tough for me to find granola at the store due to my soy and nut allergies. Unfortunately MMG was recently purchased by Element Bars and the options to "build your own nut-& soy-less bar" are limited. Custom bars are $2.99 each but then they make you order a minimum of 12 ($35.88). Popular combinations are 12 for $23.88 and, surprise, they all have nuts and/or soy.

Gu Chomps
Yum. I still eat these (and Gu gels) as a snack (sometimes).

New Balance Coolmax socks
I still like these socks, but they are taller ("ankle high") than my normal "no show" socks so I feel a little dorky when I wear them to the gym.

GoLite Drimove Baselayer shirt
This shirt started "pilling" but then again I've had it for 3+ years. I wore it a lot that first winter in Kentucky - being on a construction site doesn't have quite the same heating luxuries as a typical office. It hasn't gotten much use lately because I've been benched from running the past two winters, but I'm sure I'll use it again one day.

Ahh, the hotel-living days!
Sugoi Moxie shorts
I still love these.

Sugoi Verve shorts
I liked these at first - colorful, reflective stripes, pockets for Gu - but they haven't held up well. The elastic of the underwear lining is not so elastic-y anymore and the reflective logos peeled off. Sure, I've had them for 3+ years but I also have Nike Tempo shorts that are 6+ years old and the elastic is fine on those. (Dear Nike, don't you want to send me workout clothes?)

Overall things have held up reasonably, but I am a little disappointed in the Verve shorts. The loose liner is annoying. And why doesn't Nike want us fantastic runner/fitness bloggers to review their goodies?

Monday, February 4, 2013

Cleaning My Plate (Again)

January has come and gone and the ol' glute/lower back pain still persists. I've committed myself to 'suffer' through this layoff as my stubbornness to continue working out at my normal intensity is what (I believe) got me here in the first place. The good news is it's a little less painful when I stand up from sitting, so I take that as improvement. I'm still going to the chiro 1-2x/week, getting massages, rolling out, doing stretches and (sometimes) doing the Jane Fonda-style lower back/glute strengthening exercises. Admittedly I've slacked on those a bit.

After 4-weeks of upper-body-only workouts you'd think my arms and back muscles would be ripped, but they're not. I'm know that's because of the less-than-stellar eating habits I can't seem to shake even though I'm $10 and 1-month into a friendly weight loss competition. I want to eat healthy and clean, but danggit those m&m's, chips, and cookies keep jumping into my shopping cart while I'm not looking.

As of today I'm starting back up on my clean-eating rules. (Because you can't start anything unless it's a Monday, right?). When I did this in the summer/early fall my punishment was 100 burpees if I 'cheated'. Since I can't do burpees right now my punishment is 100 calories on the airdyne bike.
No - "Processed foods" (oreos, cheesy poofs, cereal, etc), Dairy (because it's an "inflammatory food" and I have more than my share of allergy problems), Refined sugar (this should be mostly eliminated by avoiding store-bought snacks as I already use agave/honey at home). 
Yes - Real food (vegetables, sweet potatoes, eggs, chicken, turkey, fish...), More water
Random January Numbers:
miles run - 7.3 (very early in the month before deciding to take time off)
pushups - 856
pullups - 354 (some with band assistance, some without)
ring dips - 150
bench press - 115 lbs (3 rep max)
rope climbs - 5
m&m's - (1) 56 oz bag