I've been running for about 6 months now, at least 4 days a week for the last 4 or so months. I have been using the iFit weight loss workouts on my treadmill which have me jogging now at 5-6mph at 5-10% incline. A few days ago I noticed that I was having sharp pains in my left hip which doesn't just feel like a tight muscle. The pain feels like its somewhere near my hip join area & not my butt or hip or thigh. I have the pain when I run, when I get off of a chair, step out of my car and, to a lesser degree, going up and down steps. I haven't worked out in 2 days, but the pain has not diminished (although it is not constant, just when i move certain ways). Any ideas of what I did to myself? Could it just be a sore muscle? Any suggestions or advice would be appreciated! thanks
If you press into the affected area with your fingers and can reproduce the pain, you have probably found a strained muscle. You'll easily know the difference between bone/periosteum and soft tissue like muscle. The important point to know is that the brain often locates perceived muscle pain over joints, leading to misdiagnosis and unnecessary expense.
An important clue is stair climbing: That loading of the joint would hurt more than getting out of the car or chair if the joint itself was to blame.
While running may not have caused your injury, it can accentuate the pain.
When you mentioned a weight loss program, two things came to mind: (1) You may have cut your calories to the point that it is hard to run with good form, and (2) Any changes in weight can cause muscles of the hip to shift from normal use. Certain weight distribution can overwork muscles that level the hip and stabilize joints.
Specifically, a small muscle called the pectineus helps to bring the leg forward (more so on an incline), and to guide the leg inward to center the foot while running. You would feel an adductor muscle like this when shifting from a seated position, and the pain often feels like it is from the hip joint. This small muscle is used to cross the legs and to hold them tight together as if on a horse. It is located in the crease between thigh and groin and feels striated like corduroy.
Another common hip stabilizer which could come into play in your case is the TFL (tensor fasciae latae) muscle. This one would restrict movement more and make it difficult to stand straight. You can isolate it by leaning to the other side while standing. This muscle is frequently overworked in new runners when they increase their mileage, and feels like a deep hip joint problem (which can extend to the knee). Locate it on the top front lateral side of your pelvis, just outside the hip joint. Massage it well and stretch it by leaning away as above.
The above examples are things that should be looked into before you resort to drastic measures like scans, drugs, and surgery, because they can expose you to radiation, organ damage, and permanent scarring. The fact that only one leg has the problem can also indicate podiatry, but the wise course is to look for simple causes and escalate as necessary.
We runners learn to manage our pain and live with what's left. It comes with the job. Otherwise, hospitals would be full of us.
Meanwhile, try lowering the incline on the treadmill to see if you get some relief. Running on inclines takes some getting used to.
Good luck with your training!
I have the exact same problem with a pain in my left hip. The sad thing is that I had stopped working out because my father is ill and when I returned to running I felt a shooting pain in my hip. I stayed off it for three weeks but it has not gotten any better! I did run once but I felt the pain. Is there any way to fix this (stretching or otherwise?). Did you figure out what to do?
Using the word sharp makes me think of inflamed hip bursa, also the time duration. A quick look on google showed a gout type bursitis EDIT If thats it you would have a hot spot that feels good with a cool cloth