This is the worst time for me to have any kind of injury or pains though. I am just getting to the part of marathon training with the 16-20 mile long runs. I had been feeling really good about where I was with my training and was coming off a really great race. Now I feel defeated and am questioning whether I will even be able to complete my training. I don't have the kind of running background that allows for 1-2 weeks of rest or cross training. I need to be building my mileage and increasing my long runs. Hopefully I am just being dramatic and everything will be fine.
Besides cutting out lifting I have really altered a few aspects of my training. Of course I am doing the usual stretch, ice, foam roll deal but I am taking them to the next level. Since it is the beginning of runs when my leg is bothering me I am starting each run off with a dynamic warm up. Not only does this get the body warmed up but it also stretches out the body in a safe way before starting my run. If I am doing a harder run I end it with a dramatically longer warm down followed by stretching. I am also stretching after easy runs since it is best to stretch after all runs.
If I finish my run at my apartment I foam roll my entire lower body after I am finished stretching. I'm sure it means something, although I am not sure what, but I can replicate the pain in my leg when I roll my hamstring. Since it hurts I don't do that though. My quads and hip flexors are what really seem to be needing the most foam roll love lately. After I am done rolling I then ice my leg. Icing seems to eliminate the pain for at least a little while. If I run at school I still stretch after running but I foam roll and ice later in the day when I get back to my place.
I took it generally easy last week, even cutting out my long run when the pain started to increase. I am also doing a fair amount of cross training in the forms of yoga, swimming, and biking. Although a few people have suggested it, I haven't taken any anti-inflammatory medicines yet, nor do I think I will. I don't like to take any kind of medicine unless it is necessary and right now I want to track my progress to see what is or isn't working. I am also taking the elevator whenever possible since stairs produce the pain as well.