12 April 2021

Bummer: no run

 Many years ago, when I was living in Plymouth, it happened that I suddenly got some strange cramp-like discomfort in my bum. I never knew where that came from. Luckily, it went away on its own accord as well. And in a milder form it has occasionally come back over the years. I still don't know what it is! (I looked it up; this was 11 years ago, in summer 2010. I don't seem to have mentioned the bum issue on the blog, though!)

I was getting this same sort of cramp more often recently. Often when I am running, but also for instance on the way down from yr Aran. Sometimes I walk the last part of my run as my bum is not feeling good. And then one day I went on my daily run, and I wasn't even properly out of the village when I already got the cramp. I decided to turn back, go home, and Google stretching exercises for my bum. I needed to get rid of this! And as it seemed to clearly be a muscle issue, then stretching may be the way out.

I had been a bit hesitant to Google it. Really; googling something with one's bum and stretching? That could go horribly wrong. But I did it anyway. And to my relief, lots of useful links came up, and nothing iffy. So after looking at a few of these links I made a list of ten suggested stretches, and tried them all out. Quite a few didn't seem to do what I needed them to do, but a few did. These came in two versions: one was pretty much bringing your knee to your chin and thereby stretching the bum muscle, and the other one was supposed to involve a foam roller. The idea is that your roll the muscle of your choice over the roller with the desired portion of your body weight pressing down on it. I don't have a foam roller, but I do have a different roller: I have a rolling pin! And that is considerably harder than a foam roller, but it'll have to do for now. I can really really feel the muscle that is the problem when I'm rolling my bum over that thing.

The next day, after my favourite stretches, I went for my run again. And all went well! Stupidly enough, when I later just walked to the next-door parking lot to buy cheese, I got the cramp after all. But that was much less annoying.

The day after that I was okay for a run again. And I didn't get cramp while doing things like gardening! I think I need to accept that I now need to stretch before a run. I suppose that moment was bound to come. I was already told off a bit by my sister, who didn't think it was a good idea I treated my body like that of a 20 year old. It turned out she had been told off herself for treating her body like that of a 20 year old. We're middle-aged now; we need to look after our bodies if we want them to perform! I've learned my lesson. And I think I will be stretching now for the rest of my life. This sort of thing is not likely to ever get better! As long as I can keep going by doing innocuous things like stretching then I suppose I am still blessed…

Attempt at stretching and taking a picture at the same time

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