Arnica and Running? Absolutely!

Posted: June 3, 2010 in Uncategorized

I was on a mission to do 4 sub-8-minute miles the other day, I had some great music on the mp3, but within a few hours of returning home from my run I felt the dreaded, yet familiar, “runners hip-joint pain”.   This is a pain that most runners experience at one time or another.  The last time I had it was back in early November during my final weeks of training for the half-marathon.  This time, it was about 32 hours before my next race, and I still had to knock out some kettlebells.

So I grabbed the Arnica for my hips and neck. (my two trouble spots).  After a few minutes I considered following it up with a little Icy Hot or Tigers Balm, but I decided I should try a little “homeopathic test” to see if Arnica alone could do the job.  After all, I had just read an article about how the chemicals in sunscreen can get absorbed into your bloodstream.  I thought if that can happen, what about the chemicals in Icy Hot or BenGay?  Icy Hot contains 30% Methyl Salicylate, which they warn you not to use if you’re pregnant.  Warnings like that are enough to make me want to switch to homeopathic medicines for sure!  (and natural sunscreens).  

Arnica montana did the job that night.  It took my mind off the pain long enough for me to get a quick kettlebell workout in.  I added a few extra sets of windmills and figure 8’s to my routine because those are two really good exercises to get achy hips moving (and you know how I feel about moving through pain!)  But I would say that Arnica has a subtle effect.  I think the fact that you don’t get overwhelmed with the scent of menthol and evergreen is probably a good thing (I didn’t have to hear all the flack about it from everyone in the house)… but it’s possible that the smell creates a bit of a placebo effect.  Same with Tiger Balm (which I love, by the way!) …but when I smell it, I think it’s starting to work already.  Is it?   

By the way, to find out all about Arnica… more than I could possibly explain on this blog… check out the site:

More in a later post about my race this past weekend up in the Cascades, but I’ll just say this: It was challenging!

Peace and good night!



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