Completing a marathon would've been impossible 12 months ago for me.
I struggled to walk without pain in my hip flexors and back, let alone run 42 kms.
When talking to a friend, they told me about an article they'd read that had helped them.
I was skeptical, but open to it. It ended up being a game changer. Here's the article:
I guess you could say I'm your average 55 year old guy.
I've been married 32 years, had a couple of great kids (who are no longer "kids") and worked most of my adult life.
I'd always dreamed of completing a marathon.
It just felt like an unbelievable thing to be able to say you completed.
The challenge of it excited me.
But, the reality was, whilst I was working and had a family to support, I didn't really have time to train.
So I said to myself that when I retire, I will run the marathon.
Only trouble was, as you get older, so do your joints. By the time my retirement rolled around, I could barely walk without pain.
I tried a lot of different things, but only could find marginal, short term relief.
I'd almost given up when a friend mentioned an article they'e read to me.
In a nutshell, this is what I read in that article:
Our hip flexors are the engine through which our body moves. They control balance, our ability to sit, stand, twist, reach, bend, walk and step.
Everything goes through the hips.
And when our hip flexors tighten it causes a lot of problems in ordinarily healthy and active people.
Most people don’t realize the cause of their problems is tight hip flexors.
Tight hip flexors affect nearly everybody, but few realize the impact on your whole body.
Again, everything flows through the hips.
Think of the hips as a barometer. The health and flexibility of your hip muscles are an indicator of the strength and health of our whole body.
Your hips are the bridge between your upper body and lower body. They are at the center of your body's movement.
Sitting within the well of your hip and lower spine is the psoas major muscle, one of the two muscles that makes up the iliopsoas.
It’s often called the "mighty" psoas (pronounced so-az) for the many important functions it plays in the movement of your body.
The psoas is the only muscle in the human body connecting the upper body to the lower body.
The muscle attaches to the vertebrae of the lower spine, moves through the pelvis and connects to a tendon at the top of the femur. It also attaches to the diaphragm, so it’s connected to your breathing, and upon it sits all the major organs.
A functioning psoas muscle creates a neutral pelvic alignment, stabilizes the hips, supports the lower spine and abdomen, supports the organs in the pelvic and abdominal cavity and gives you greater mobility and core strength.
When it functions well, it has the power to…
… help you achieve peak performance day after day after day.
… rapidly drop ugly body fat that stubbornly clings to your body.
… train harder, heavier and gain strength faster than you thought possible.
… hit your peak of sexual health.
… flood your mind and body with renewed energy and vigor.
Put simply, this muscle is the core of activity in your body. So, when it's out of balance or if the psoas tightens, there are serious consequences which flow throughout the body.