Body Tune-Up

Back on September 5, I caught my right toe on a rock at Bastrop and took a fall, wrenching the leg as I went down. I did this years ago (left leg, but same park), and really pulled something up in the butt/high hamstring area. I was only able to keep running because we were with trail runner Steve Williams, who has massage background as a therapist, I believe, and he worked on me right then and there. I did the same thing this time, but it didn’t hurt as bad nor keep me from running. As the weeks went by, my leg never really hurt or bothered my running too much, but it was sore, clearly not completely right, and bothersome (especially when I had to sit and drive for hours).

My massage therapist had worked on it a bit on September 21 but she really focused on it when I went in for my pre-race tune up on Friday. My friend Malinda had recommended Gayla to me back during Ironman training, and I’ve stayed with her since; I think she does an amazing, wonderful job. She’s very attentive to what’s going on with me.

Between the two of us –s he trying different muscles, different movents, and me giving feedback — we were able to pinpoint the exact spot to work on and she got the muscles to relax. It was incredible; I literally felt an electric current zap through my system. It made me realize how “jammed up” that area has been for the last month and, while I didn’t think I was “injured” per se, it had to have affected my power output and the use of that leg.

I’ve been foam rolling about twice a day since then, trying to keep everything loose and stretched. Epsom salts and apple cider vinegar baths, too. And it’s funny — the work she did made me realize that the area I need to loosen up was actually on the front of my leg, up at the top of my quads. Before, I’m been trying to stretch out the big butt muscles in the back.

So no wonder I wasn’t seeing improvement; I was working the wrong damn spot.

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Published by Leah Nyfeler

I'm a writer, editor, runner, and adventurer who is always looking for the next new story, exciting adventure, and good meal/book/movie. My focus is on helping people find their best, healthiest self through sharing what I know and how I've come to learn it. In addition to my blog "Enjoying the Journey: Observations on the Fit Life" at, my articles have appeared in a variety of print and online magazines. You can hear me as part of the 2015 Austin cast of Listen To Your Mother.

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