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Published September 06, 2010, 12:00 AM

Wagner: Sometimes a medical opinion is helpful

As part of my rehabilitation for a lower abdomen strain, the orthopedic told me that I should visit a physical therapist.

As part of my rehabilitation for a lower abdomen strain, the orthopedic told me that I should visit a physical therapist.

It turned out to be an eye-opening experience for me.

After a short discussion about the injury and some stretches, it didn’t take long for the physical therapist to give me a succinct diagnosis. In brief, nearly everything about me was messed up: poor posture, muscle imbalances and poor flexibility.

Over the past several months, these problems affected nearly every moment of the day – from sitting at my desk to getting a restful night of sleep – and all the attempts to alleviate the discomfort actually made it worse.

Up to this point, the only relief has been the chiropractic appointments I routinely attend before races. While I directly attribute the chiropractor to helping me run well on race day, the day-to-day discomfort has been growing worse.

With a heavy load of training, the muscular problems have gradually grown to the point of injury. Walking out of the physical therapist’s office with a handful of exercises and tip sheets, I’ve begun to put the newfound knowledge to work.

It’s already paid dividends.

The best part is that I’ve been able to keep running.

And while the injury forced me to dial back training for next month’s Chicago Marathon, I’m still going to be able to run the race. And long term, I’ll be a much better runner because of what I’ve learned dealing with this injury.

Tidbits

- There are a growing number of runners planning to honor Mark Schreiner, a high school friend of mine, during this year’s F-M Mini Marathon on Oct. 9. He was injured earlier this summer and faces a pretty tough recovery. To encourage Mark and help his family, visit the “Miles For Mark” page on Facebook, the online social networking site.

- If you’re interested in a low-key cross country-style event, the Filthy 5K on Oct. 16 will suit your style. It’s a fun – and muddy – race in Moorhead’s M.B. Johnson Park. Visit the Beyond Running store in downtown Fargo or online at www.gobeyondrunning.com for more information or to register.


Forum News Director Steve Wagner writes a running blog, which can be found at www.areavoices.com/runningspud. He can be reached at (701) 241-5542 or swagner@forumcomm.com.

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