Running Pain Free: How to Heal a Hip Flexor Injury

I healed my hip flexor pain with these exercises. YAY to no more pain…and new goals

Last weekend I completed (and placed top 5 in) my second 10k in three years (woah) and was able to run the race pain free.

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I clearly did NOT like the water crossing 90 seconds into the race…..

As I’ve mentioned before, running was my first (fitness) love. It was a huge part of my life for almost eight years, and then suddenly, it wasn’t. For a time, my heart couldn’t handle running at all. It took the pressure off. When a doctor tells you no, it hurts, it’s fucking scary but you deal with it. Only recently did I start to consider starting up again.

Why?

RogueRanch-79.jpgTo be totally honest, I was really scared to come back. After taking three years off, I definitely did not think getting back in the saddle would be easy. I didn’t think I would immediately regain my speed or endurance. While I know that’s 100000% normal, it also scared the shit out of me. What if my times don’t compare? What if I simply can’t run ten milers anymore? So many questions and doubts filled my head (another post, another time).

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WELL….I didn’t even get the chance to work through those questions. When I started running again, I was quickly hit with some pretty excruciating hip flexor pain. Even after a few weeks of training, hip flexor pain persisted for hours-sometimes even days-after an intense run (like when I ran my 10k). So you might be wondering…

Why hip flexor pain?

Most of us sit all day, which leads to chronically tight and overactive hip flexors. Without particular care paid to our overactive muscles, regular exercise and strength training can actually make muscle imbalances worse. This is why it is so important to work with a professional to make sure your strength training program addresses YOUR body, with its strengths and weaknesses!

So I took my own advice and chatted with my trainer. I also did some research of my own to put together a stretching and strengthening program. It’s honestly eliminated hip flexor pain, even when sprinting!

How does this program work?

I’ve separated the program into two parts, stretching and strengthening. Both are super important. We want to address the overactive/tight muscles, while also strengthening our weaker muscles (in this case, our medial glutes!)

 

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What are these exercises?!

Glad you asked! I’ve posted a demo of the exercises on YouTube. Let me know if you like videos like these, ok??? 🙂

How can I incorporate this into my routine?

I’d suggest that you do the stretching portion every day, even if you aren’t working out. This is something really nice to fold into your netflix-watching-wine-drinking-puppy-snuggling time. It only takes a few minutes!

On days you exercise, add the strengthening movements into your dynamic warm up-especially if you are going for a run! I never jump right into a slow jog for a warm up anymore, always perform additional stretching and activation exercises.

Questions? Comment below or send me an email. I would love to work with you!

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2 thoughts on “Running Pain Free: How to Heal a Hip Flexor Injury

  1. […] Friends, I’ve been doing too much of what I love and need to prioritize resting a little more. When I started running, it was a bit of a shock to my body, leaving me feeling sore (yay!) but also with pain in my hip flexor every time I run. With the help of my amazing trainer, I’m working on a hip strengthening program which should help. [Update: it helped a ton. Don’t miss it] […]

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