There’s always an aura of impatience when dealing with an injured runner. Mix extreme frustration with a dash of depression and you has a runner who’s convinced they’re never going to run again. Most of my patient visits are a sprint to “fixing why I’m hurt.” “I just want to run again… and as soon as possible.”
Here’s the interesting thing… fixing why you’re hurt may not be your only obstacle to getting back on the road. Given that most running injures develop over time–the sort of thing you can run with until you can’t–most runners develop a chronic mess that is the ultimate source of their injury (pain). Wedged into the corner, this is typically when runners seek council.
Granted, this is typically following a dose of “Google MD” and “trying a bunch of stuff from YouTube” before I lead them back to the evaluation room. Head low, feeling defeated, we go through a direct litany of questions to determine not only the cause, but also the path back to running.
We get injured for countless reasons. The most common include: changing shoes too quickly, training mistakes, and/or muscle imbalance.
Regardless, it comes down to a conversation of “putting out the fire.” No, not your emotional fire that is raging because you’re not running. I’m talking about that hot, aggravated, and raw injury site.
Putting out the fire can be the frustrating part for both of us. The fire is essentially the pain you feel with activity (ie running). Below, I discuss why fixing the “why” behind your injury is not the only challenge.