My hammy, heat or ice?

I’ve been noticing a tightness in my left hamstring, sort of a persistant twinge. It’s noticable as a weakness when I’m walking and I come to a curb. I’ll leap from my right leg and land on the curb with my left leg, but because the leg is bent at the knee when I strike the cement, there’s this quick pain and a weakness in my hamstring that almost feels like I’ll collapse.

I don’t, but that’s the best way to describe it. I also notice the pain/tightness when I sprint.

I don’t necessarily feel I need to rest my leg, but I do need to find some sort of stretch for it.

My hamstrings have always been tight. When I played softball in my late 30s, pulling a hammy running the bases was a regular occurrence.

Before the game, I’d have to do a proper warmup and stretch, which helped minimize it, but the threat of a pull always remained.

Part of the problem is, I hate stretching. I’m relatively inflexible and stretching hurts. I’ve never been able to touch my toes. I have to use a towel wrapped around my foot to pull myself into a stretch because I can’t reach my foot. Even with the towel for leverage, I’m still several inches away from my toes.

See this meme?

I can’t do either of those. Even the bottom person is closer than I can come. 

So I’m wondering, since I can’t get a significant stretch out of my hammy with the hurdlers stretch or the modified hirdlers stretch, if I need to find other stretches for it.

So I did an Internet search and I found these, which I’ll have to experiment with to see if the help:

Lying hamstring stretch

The lying hamstring stretch looks promising. I already have the towel for the hurdlers stretch, so it’ll be an easy transition to this.

Bench hamstring stretch

The bench hamstring stretch also looks promising. I’ll probably still need a towel to pull muself into the stretch, but otherwise all you need is some stairs or a coffee table.

I’ll research further to see if there are other stretches I can manage with my inflexible body. 

In the meantime, starting tomorrow… OK, fine, right away, I’ll do those two stretches and see if there is any improvement over the next week.

By the way, should you apply ice right after a run, or heat? Is the heat later after you’ve rested?

Run. Stretch. Ouch.