Relaxin

So it has been well documented in this blog that with my second pregnancy I had pubic bone pain, probably because I produced more relaxin in combination with general weakness from the relaxin during my first pregnancy.  Anyhoo, my pubic bone pain became such a big deal that I was seeing a chiropractor to help realign me and relieve the pain.

Fast forward to nearly 8 months postpartum, and I am in pain from a groin pull that happened last night from soccer.  Keep in mind that I haven’t had a groin pull in years!  I seriously can’t remember the last time I pulled my groin since I started wearing compression shorts as suggested by a trainer in college.  It seriously could be 10+ years.  So imagine my frustration and dismay to quit at half time because I just couldn’t jog, let alone play soccer.  My husband said that I am just old, which is true, but there has to be more to it.

So as I was lying in bed, moaning about the pain, I quickly did a Google search about relaxin.  Relaxin is the hormone produced during pregnancy to help loosen your ligaments to help your pelvis open up to push a baby through, but is nondiscriminatory so effects all joints in the body.  Why did I do a Google search for relaxin specifically?  Well, I have noticed that my hips and pubic bone aren’t quite 100%.  If I walk/run a lot (say a full soccer game) or an entire day of shopping, my legs feel like they are coming out of their sockets and sometimes a  little pain in the pubic bone area if it’s really bad.  (Also my historically bad shoulder has been really weak, as in it hasn’t been this bad since I first injured it.)  The last time I felt this kind of pain was when I was pregnant.  Turns out it takes a long time for relaxin to leave your body postpartum (a couple of months), and apparently your body produces relaxin if you are breastfeeding!  And this makes sense since Wikipedia says female breasts also produces the hormone.  Granted, the amount isn’t nearly as much produced when are you pregnant.  But the fact that it is present in your body is enough concern if you are trying to play coed soccer with people 10 years your junior who all played college level soccer.  No wonder I pulled my groin last night!!!

FYI, I stopped breastfeeding my son at 6 months, and that was around the time I really ramped up my exercise routine (e.g., bootcamp, soccer, and lacrosse).  So I never experienced this before with him.

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