Knots, massaging, and all that recovery - is this normal?
I've only now been racing for about 13 months. About 8 months I started having problems with my knees. 5 months ago we discovered it was basically because my flexibility is/was crap - I'd been doing little or no stretching, causing all kinds of problems.
Over time I've started working on this, and it's getting better, but I'm now at that point where I can't build any more muscle until they'll stretch properly. And I can't really do much more through stretching until 25 years worth of knots in my legs are gone - in 25 years they've never been touched by a masseuse or physio. Currently I have a dead zone in the downstroke from my left leg, as there's this knot that feels like it's half the size of my thigh - as part of training/improving, it's just something that was going to have to be looked at.
So this morning I was in for acupuncture and a massage, having been made well aware how much this will kill the first (few) times trying to get these knots out. In that it was discovered my hip and left leg were out of whack, so a lot of work was done on my spine and left calf. That wasn't so bad. Slightly painful, but completely perfectly bearable. You could seriously feel them all the way down my left calf though, and it had the physio surprised how badly knotted it was.
But then it came to having to work on my right thigh - holy crap! A pain so incredibly agonizing it was decided (though not by me) that we'd leave it there and try a bit more on that next time. (I managed to dig a fingernail into the palm of my hand from the clenched fist, oops).
Anyway, now that I've probably described myself to be the biggest girl on the planet, I do have a realistic question: Is it normal for it to be that bad/painful, trying to get into muscles and work knots out? I assume if this is something that's done on a regular basis, it's nowhere near as bad?
Or am I quite literally just a big girl? :P
The plan is to not ignore this kind of stuff if possible, and get it kept in check if necessary.
Originally Posted by tom2304
Last year I saw a PT for the first time about ;eft knee pain that has plagued me for 10+ years. When he worked on me for the first few weeks it was very painful. It felt so good afterwards that I kept going back. I ended up having my knee scoped and I'm in recovery now. PT is painful but the reward is what you get afterwards. Sometimes the results take a while. My knees and legs feel much better after PT both short and long term.
The foam roller will be your best friend.
I call my foam roller "Dr. Foam" because I crack so much while using it.
Originally Posted by cocheese
Using it on the peraformis and IT band is the worst though.. I really need to get those stretchedo out.
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Sounds like you need to scale back your training. The tight muscles might be causing the knots. The muscles with knots are doing too much work, while some that should be helping are on vacation. The good news is that you're young enough to heal quickly. Strengthen your core.
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private Abs _abs;
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If you can afford the massages, then keep it up.
Also, if you like XC racing, find a Bikram yoga class. It's an hour and a half of suffering, but you'll feel great after. With the yoga, you'll gain flexibility and strength, including core and legs. Go at least twice a week.
+1 on the foam roller.
Tennis ball helps on the piriformis and glute.
Yeah, I've asked the physio for some exercises I can do for core strength, but haven't really gotten much back yet. I suspect two of the really big knots were done when I cramped up 4 weeks ago during an 8 hour, when it was 38 degrees.
I gotta try find someone who sells them foam rollers.
Originally Posted by tom2304
"Sticks" and good too. It's a massage tool that you hold in your hand and roll it over yourself.