Skewered by Sciatica

Is it wrong to start a blog post with a sigh? No? Good. *Sigh* Since last October I have talked about getting out on the AT for a few miles. I began planning in early April, and several things have conspired to keep me from getting out to the Monson trailhead for more than the quick visit I had on April 16th.

The latest? A raging (albeit pretty much self-inflicted) bout of sciatica.

It started to bother me pretty severely during a muddy trail run, and when I came home and did a couple of stretches to try and alleviate some of the ache, I turned it into a raging three-day limp full of sharp jolting pain. So I stayed off it for a few days, and then gingerly took it out for an easy two mile trail run. It didn’t feel any worse, so I enthusiastically dropped to the floor for a modified Child’s Pose (an easier stretch than the “regular” one), a method I have used hundreds of times to dull the sciatic ache in my back with no adverse effects whatsoever.

This time, when I finished I couldn’t stand back up. Literally. Another round of agonizingly sharp pain, limping and soreness ensued. I’ve never had a sciatic experience like this. Ever. I guess I can’t deny getting older. My body is doing its own thing whether I want it to or not.

The end result of all of this? No Memorial Day weekend hike on the Appalachian Trail. Shoot, I needed to practically crawl down the stairs on my hands and knees over the weekend. I couldn’t imagine tackling even the parking lot at the start of the Hundred Mile Wilderness.

But things are looking up. I’ve managed to limp/jog a few miles over the last couple of days, and my dependence on OTC pain meds is waning. Plus, I got to have a Permethrin party on Tuesday to help me stay focused on getting out there.

Permethrin party

Gear sprayed with Sawyer’s and ready to go.


I can’t believe it’s June and I still haven’t gone for an official shake-out cruise on the AT. So many things have seemed to conspire against me. But here’s the good news: I checked a couple of satellite images, read a few hiker blogs, and checked a few maps, and it appears that the Appalachian Trail still exists. So I have plenty of time.

If I can exercise a bit of patience (pun intended) I should be able to get out there in the coming week for a short jaunt, and FINALLY be able to pen a blog post about an ACTUAL hike on the Trail…


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