[Changed my mind again about the direction of this blog, so comment moderation's off once again.]
Last Thursday, I did a speed workout that left me with a whole bunch of muscle aches. Some people, after hurting themselves say, "I'll be sure not to do that again," but I instantly think, "that must mean that that's the type of workout I need to do more of." Ever run a marathon and find that you can't walk down a flight of steps the next day unless you turn around and do it backward because your quads hurt? [Ever write a sentence that grammatically poor?] Ever do a hard workout and feel fine the next day, but completely trashed the following day?
During Thursday's run, I felt sudden sharp soreness in both quads and my left hamstring. The next day, I was a little sore and ran easy. Saturday I could barely move. Sunday I could barely move. Monday I felt good until I tried to run and then felt muscle soreness with every step. Today I might run hard again. Some coaches talk about alternating hard/easy, some hard/easy/easy; apparently I need at least 4 easy days!
Brief physiology diversion
I strained both rectus femoris muscles and pulled my left semimembranosus muscle.
The difference between a muscle strain and a muscle pull is largely a matter of degree. Soreness is damage to individual cells, strain to muscle bundles and fibers, pull to a cross-section of the muscle. "Tears" can be strains or pulls or complete ruptures. If you ever see someone completely rupture a hamstring muscle, it's obvious - they fall to the ground in mid-step and they don't get back up, but roll around, grabbing the muscle in their hand where they hurt it.
I was going to talk about the individual muscles, but... who cares? If you want to know more, here's links for the rectus femoris and semimembranosus.
5 days ago