Most triathletes and runners have a ‘secret’ weapon that they swear gets them through their training and racing season. Some say it’s ice baths after a long run/hard workout, some attribute their success to regular massages, other swear by yoga to get them through their year injury free. So what is my ‘secret’ weapon? It’s actually none of the things I mentioned about. My ‘secret’ weapon is my chiropractor!
As a runner, I never went to a chiropractor. In fact, I had some pretty strong opinions against them! The majority of my experiences with a chiropractor prior to last year were pretty poor, and thus I lumped them all into one group: quacks! However, last spring, I began to experience a lot of numbness and tingling in my right foot. At first, I suspected I had chronic anterior compartment syndrome. However, I later noticed that it seemed to start from my butt and run down the back of my leg. This then led me to the diagnosis of sciatic nerve impingement. I suspected this happened due to my hips being rotated and thus putting pressure on my nerve. I was correct in the diagnosis, but I had to find a way to fix it! I knew a good chiropractor might be helpful, so I searched around for a couple months, trying a few different ones. Finally, I found the best chiropractor! Those of you who are local and need some chiropractic care, I highly recommend Chiropractic Associates of Centerville!
By the time I went to see these doctors, I was experiencing foot numbness on a daily basis without even exercising. Just driving my car for 10 minutes would cause my foot to go numb! I had only completed two out of 5 races for the season, and I was very nervous about being able to compete. This is a picture of my feet on the first day I saw the chiropractor. You can see that due to my hips being rotated, one foot was an inch shorter than the other!
Not only did they immediately give me relief and help me make it through my first triathlon season, but they also gave me exercises and advice to help keep my hips from rotating out again! Since July, I have been seeing them monthly. I have been improving a lot and am now strong enough to keep my hips from rotating too far.
I am now officially a convert, and an advocate for chiropractic care. I honestly don’t know how I would compete as a triathlete without it!
So what’s your secret weapon that gets you through a season healthy? I’d love to hear your thoughts!!