Tuesdays on the Run is here again! Patty from My No-Guilt Life, Erika from MCM Mama Runs are exploring how alternative medicine can help runners! I’ve tried three different alternative medicine treatments for my running to prevent and treat injuries, even those nagging little ones. They all did help, but to different degrees. I get acupuncture at least once a month and I can attest that it does help. I have been treated for some running injuries but I primarily go to acupuncture for overall health and support of my constitution. When I was pregnant I had gestational diabetes and I had to test my blood sugar after every meal. I noticed that on the days I went to acupuncture, my blood sugar was always much lower and more stable. So, I am pretty confident that there is some non-placebo effect. And just relaxing on the table for an hour or so is a stress reliever! Here’s an older post about my experience with acupuncture if you’re interested in more detail!
I go to the chiropractor from time to time. I don’t really like to visit if I’m not having any issues but I did have one really great experience. I had this bizarre pain in the front of my hip (the iliac crest) always hurt when I ran. I went to an ortho doctor and physical therapy but no one could diagnose or fix my problem. This went on for months! I finally went to the chiropractor and although I limped in, after the adjustment I walked out and didn’t have a recurrence of the pain! The alternative medicine treatment that is the absolutely most effective for me is deep tissue massage. I love getting massages, even when they kind of hurt, because I tend to keep a lot of tension in my muscles. Especially my neck and shoulders and my calves. When I’m getting massage regularly, I notice that I get fewer running injuries and just feel better and looser on the run. I’m lucky to have great health insurance that covers part of it and that we have a great selection of sports massage therapists (yay, university town!). Here’s my prior post on massage if you’d like to know more!
When I was battling an injury (achilles tendonitis), I did have some physical therapy that included ultrasound and electro-stim therapy. I definitely think those helped me heal much faster!
While I always recommend that people with an injury visit their doctor or an orthopedic doctor who specializes in running, my personal experience has been that alternative medicine can sometimes help prevent future injuries or even fix a stubborn mystery injury!
Have you ever tried alternative medicine to help with your running? What works for you?