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Pin the tail on the Hamstring Issue! (Read 189 times)

dblendc


    Well I can’t seem to narrow this down so I am turning to your collective experience. Super short history about me I am doing 60 miles per week and going through Daniels 5k-15k training. I am in the process of getting my training loaded on the site.

    In the buildup to a recent 10k I felt “something” going on in the hamstring area on the left side. The “something” was really nothing more than me noticing that the left hammy felt funny towards the end of a run. Some light active isolated stretches and that was that, I was good to go the next day. This went on for let’s say two weeks.

    Then I noticed something else. I would feel fine after the stretching, it wasn’t until I was OFF of my feet that I would lose flexibility in that left hamstring. I would go to stand up and notice a sensation not an overall OMG I can’t stand this pain, but not a dull sensation either, but more than just a tightness in the back of the leg as well. And if I tried to touch my toes (which I have always been able to do) it wasn’t going to happen. Any attempt at any straight leg flexibility or stretch was an issue. If the knee is bent I can bring my knee all the way to my chest however.

    Running still wasn’t a major issue... the leg would loosen up and I was able to get all my scheduled runs in, but I was noticing that my HR was higher than it had been in the past on ALL my runs easy, or hard.

    I tried a couple days off and the leg felt good so I did the last couple work outs and no issues during the run then midday (after some rest) here is that tightness / lack of flexibility again.

    Last thing that I noticed. When I would sit on the toilet (sorry, but this is where I noticed it) I would feel a minor pain sensation in the hammy where I made contact with the seat. This area wasn’t painful before and it wasn’t an area of concern after. Just something I noticed.

    Well the 10k and come and gone and while I didn’t P.R. (not really a P.R. type course) I pitched hell at it and showed vast improvements over last year’s results. Now I want this hamstring thing taken care of. Some research pointed me to 3 possible things. Hamstring Strain – Sacroiliac Joint Pain - Sciatica. Please help as I cannot seem to pick which of the 3 I’m facing. I’m guessing its some nerve something or another especially because of the toilet thing. That area really had nothing out of the normal until pressure is put on it (sat on the seat). So what are we guessing and what is a treatment approach since it still I the acute phase (at least I hope it is).

    Thanks for following this far along!!

    d

    runlikeagirI


      Find someone in your area and go - http://www.activerelease.com/providerSearch.asp . Issue(s) can usually be resolved in just a couple of visits.

        It's impossible to diagnose over the internet.

         

        Your pain is consistent with high hamstring tendinopathy, which I'm pretty sure is what I've been dealing with for 6-9 months. If that's what it is then the root cause is probably core strength and pelvic posture issues. Don't expect a quick fix. Soft tissue treatment can help with temporary relief but won't provide a permanent fix.

         

        Here's my recent experience with self-diagnosis and treatment. Final results still tbd.

        Runners run.

          I had a similar issue that started in January. It came on gradually until I couldn't ignore it anymore. I tried to fix it myself, and it started to get better slowly with stretching and the myrtl routine twice a day for a month.  It got well enough for me to complete a 50 miler and was still doing better. I then started some speed workouts, and it got worse.  Instead of hurting in just my upper hamstring area, it was also hurting higher in the outer hip and down the leg.  I went to the ART doc which helped some on the day of treatment, but it wasn't fixing it. She referred me to a PT.  Turns out my left side is significantly weaker than my right, and I was out of alignment. I am now stretching twice a day and doing strengthening exercises (hips and core).  Also I warmup (http://strengthrunning.com/2011/07/the-standard-warm-up-video-demonstration/) before starting to run since I sit all day at work.  I stretch after my runs. All this requires a lot of effort, but that tight as a rubber band feeling in my left hip is gone. The sciatica that I was feeling is gone, and I know exactly what you are talking about with the pressure on the hamstring when you sit in the restroom. That's gone, too. My last speed work caused a little aching so the PT suggested I wait a couple of weeks, keep up stretching and strengthening, and try to the exact same speed workout again to see if there is progress.

           

          I just got tired of guessing about what I needed to do to get better so I finally went to a PT. I really wish I had gone sooner than I did.  If you have the resources, it would probably be worth it to find one that can help.

          Live the Adventure. Enjoy the Journey. Be Kind. Have Faith!

          runlikeagirI


            Cassie, I pretty much got the same advice you did from my ART chiro. There are stretches & strengthening exercises that I'm to do every day.  Luckily, mine didn't progress to sciatica, but I did have the upper hamstring/hip/glute discomfort.  As best we can tell, it originated from a relatively immobile SI joint.

              That's good news.  Sounds like you may have started working on it earlier than I did.  My sciatica may have actually been from the weirdness in my hip/hamstring area causing issues in my lower back on a disc (L5) that had bulging issues a few years ago and tends to act up from time to time. Then again, the sciatica could have also been caused by inflammation in some of the muscles in the hip/hamstring area putting pressure on the nerve.

               

              How's your injury doing now?

               

               

              Cassie, I pretty much got the same advice you did from my ART chiro. There are stretches & strengthening exercises that I'm to do every day.  Luckily, mine didn't progress to sciatica, but I did have the upper hamstring/hip/glute discomfort.  As best we can tell, it originated from a relatively immobile SI joint.

              Live the Adventure. Enjoy the Journey. Be Kind. Have Faith!


              I'm back!

                This is like the year of the bad hamstrings; what is going on? I half believe there's a virus out there that makes us extra susceptible. Anyway all I can tell you is, you don't really want your hamstring MRI to look like this.

                 

                  Ugh.  Good tendons wear black? What does a white tendon mean exactly? Also, what are they telling you to do to heal that bad boy?

                  Live the Adventure. Enjoy the Journey. Be Kind. Have Faith!


                  I'm back!

                    Good tendons show up black on MRI, yeah. White means inflammation in the surrounding tissues (tendinitis) and/or messed-up tendinous tissue (tendinopathy). I can't interpret this very well. But the ortho said tendinitis, tendinopathy, and "some tearing" -- basically meaning, I think, that the tendon is kind of munched up. Treatment will probably start with PRP injections, but before that I have a back MRI, because it seems likely there is some sciatic component as well.

                     

                    Long term, assuming I can get the tendon usable again, it's down to what mikey says: "root cause is probably core strength and pelvic posture issues". I am way too tight in all the classic wrong places, hip flexors, quads, IT bands, and all that puts more stress on the hamstrings than there should be. So it's lots of stetching, mobility, and core stability work for me.

                    dblendc


                      Thanks for all the advice….Some of it worked better than others. There are no quick fixes and no shortcuts to fitness / faster times. Guess I had it coming to me. While I still don’t have things figured out some literature sure has opened my eyes. Anatomy for Runners is a good read and sure makes you focus on you the runner. Again thanks to everyone who chimed in on my predicament.

                        another here dealing with hamstring issue.   looking back think that it had been coming on since a 10k back in april/may.  tried to ignore until the sharp pains & constant tightness/discomfort 24/7.    still been running last 4 weeks when it was at its worse, but pretty much all easy/short & even throwing in some walking at 1st sign of moderate discomfort or the sharp pains.  cut out pretty much all uptempo/speed work & mileage cut down 3/4.   have been to PT 4 sessions (# 5 in about an hour) where I have been getting treatment-stretching, strengthening, massage (ouch!) & e-stimulation.   great improvement this past few days but still being conservative.  This am did 1st track intervals in 4 weeks (hurray!!) but was very conservative.  did not check interval times, only total time of w/o.

                         

                        this injury came out the exact wrong time in training for some important races.  today at track felt like I had lost alot of what has been built up with the 8-10 wks of my Wed track w/o.  expecting PR times or close for these series of races but now have to downgrade expectations. but at least finally showing some positive signs.  has been frustrating, will carry on once again.

                          Good tendons show up black on MRI, yeah. White means inflammation in the surrounding tissues (tendinitis) and/or messed-up tendinous tissue (tendinopathy). I can't interpret this very well. But the ortho said tendinitis, tendinopathy, and "some tearing" -- basically meaning, I think, that the tendon is kind of munched up. Treatment will probably start with PRP injections, but before that I have a back MRI, because it seems likely there is some sciatic component as well.

                           

                          Long term, assuming I can get the tendon usable again, it's down to what mikey says: "root cause is probably core strength and pelvic posture issues". I am way too tight in all the classic wrong places, hip flexors, quads, IT bands, and all that puts more stress on the hamstrings than there should be. So it's lots of stetching, mobility, and core stability work for me.

                           

                          I had/have same issues since 2007 and my hammys looked similar to that on musculoskeletal ultrasound and did do the PRP last Dec and had a 40-50% improvement. I am not 100% but better and am able to do most everything other than regular speed work in training. Another issue is that I drive and sit a lot which is an issue. My flexibility or lack of is not my issue. I do run with heavy heel strike which  has braking effect and emphasizing hammys. I agree that flexibility, core and glute strength are key. Rest, is not always best answer at least for me as I had minimal to no inflammation (tendonapathy).

                          Those who try, fail! Those who do what it takes to succeed, succeed!!

                            dumb question, but what kind of doctor do you see for a hamstring/tendonopathy issue?  I want to get an MRI to see if there is tearing or tendon damage so I can get it fixed this winter and be better next year.

                             

                            That said, I had upper hamstrong tendon issues real bad last summer and this spring but started doing glute and hamstring exercises (squates, bridges mostly), a little more core work and I stopped stretching my hammys other than some very easy stuff.  And, lo and behold, I'm feeling much better.  I'm not pushing the speed work ,just what's comfortable but my fall marathon training has gone very well.

                              Same here, I backed off the stretching and just do some maintenance work. I pass the hamstring flexibility test so that is not my main issue. I have primarily seen sports medicine docs. The doc who did my PRP injections was a sports doc for university and I saw her in her private practice. She had a lot of experience doing the PRP injections and part of those injections she does a lot of picking of the tendon with the needle to create blood flow before injecting the PRP. I think you are doing the right things.

                              Those who try, fail! Those who do what it takes to succeed, succeed!!

                                If you have not yet picked up Anatomy for Runners by Jay Dicharry as MikeyMike recommend in his blog, I recommend it.  Very helpful!

                                Live the Adventure. Enjoy the Journey. Be Kind. Have Faith!

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