I recently ran my first half-marathon. I'm sort of a fitness buff, so the cardiovascular element of running is relatively easy for me. But oh, the aches and pains of using muscles differently than I do in my normal gym-rat/yoga-girl routine! My lifelong pattern is that I can run six or seven miles just fine, but right around mile 7.125, I get a shooting, sciatic pain deep in my hip. Then, as if on cue, my genetically archless (sigh) feet share with me precisely how they feel about the impact I've subjected them to during the preceding hour.And this time was like all the others. Until it wasn't, that is. This go-round, when the hip pain came, I resolved to figure out what was causing it and to fix the problem. I did the research and diagnosed myself with a textbook case of piriformis syndrome, a common runner's malady in which the piriformis muscle in your hip tightens up around your sciatic nerve, creating intense pain. I figured out that the cause of my piriformis syndrome was also ...
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