That's how I've always felt when I go to see my massage therapist, Shannon. I'll mention a tight muscle and she'll suggest a couple stretches for it. She also always reminds me to stretch and sometimes ice the muscles she worked on afterwards. And... well, let's just say, I'm less then diligent.
Now, I've got another stretching advocate, Dr Greg. He's the chiropractor I went to see about my tight achey calf, once I realized it could be shin splints.
Now, it may seem ridiculous that I didn't realize I was developing shin splints, but let me just say that it isn't my shins that were bothering me. Rather, it is the muscle that connects to them. So, I was identifying it as calf tightness, which it is. The thing is, with the location of this calf tightness (and the fact that it never really went away), it can lead to shin splints.
Anyways, Dr. Greg asked me about my stretching practices. I said that I try to stretch - sometimes. Truthfully, I do try to stretch, but not nearly as often as I should. I'd say 1 out 4 runs a week are followed by a good stretch. After swimming or biking? Almost never.
Then he asked me if I'd been icing the sore calf. I said no. I know I should, but I just don't take the time.
He told me I was being a dumb ass.
Okay... actually he didn't say I was a dumb ass. Much more diplomatic. I think it was more like "Deb, Deb Deb, you're going to have to be a more seasoned triathlete."
What I heard (and I'm sure he was thinking) is "Don't be such a dumb ass. You're not twenty years old anymore."
Now, the GOOD news is, I've got no restriction on running, and while this is an overuse injury, it is currently a very minor one - provided I take care of it properly.
Then he proceeded to move my leg around and prod at my calf. If you've never had ART before, let me say it sure doesn't tickle. But, it's productive pain, and if it would keep me running, I'd deal with any pain that can help me.
For the next couple weeks, I need to stretch after running, ice it and get some ART (active release therapy).
Oh, and I probably should keep stretching after that, as well as icing when I have sore spots. After all, I need to stop being a dumb ass, because I'm not twenty years old anymore...