It was iliotibial band syndrome. Just an overuse injury caused by a tight, irritated muscle on the outside of my thigh. (I, along with half of all runners, am an expert on this injury so feel free to e-mail questions about it!**) The only cure was complete cessation of all running.
Running is spiritual. It is the shadow of my relationship with God, a physical symbol for an invisible inner life. Through it I learned to be strong, to be humble, to persevere. Now it was time to surrender.
So, for three months I didn’t so much as jog across the parking lot.
Winter passed slowly. Things began to change. Greg and I moved into a new house in the country. I secured a teaching job at a school close by for the following year. I started a small group for teenage girls in our upstairs room.
One morning I looked out the window at the fresh blue skies of Spring. I grabbed my running shoes from the dark corner of my closet and started again. This time, it was no girl, pouting and selfish who flew across the countryside under the warm sun.
It was a woman.
*“While I’m In Between” taken from Not a Girl, Not Yet a Woman by Britney Spears.
**Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITBS): The IT band connects the iliac (hip) to the tibia (at the knee). A healthy IT band can move back and forth across the femoral epicondyle with each step, pain free. When the band is overused, it tightens, becomes inflamed, and causes a painful burning on the outside of the knee or down the outside of the thigh.
If you think you have an IT band injury, stop running immediately and focus on getting it loose again. Special stretches here can show you how to properly care for the injury and prevent it from happening in the future. Also, a foam roller is miraculous for IT bands.
If you live in the metroplex, GO HERE for an evaluation and adjustment. This guy has saved the running careers of half our church.
4 days ago