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It was my own fault for trying my 7 mile run after poor stretching and having 3 days of little activity, so I ended up pulling or straining part of my gluteus! I'm so mad! It's tender when I walk but not tons of pain. I've been eating horribly for the past two weeks (Burger King, fried claims, FRIED SNICKERS... gained 1-2lbs of fat, not water weight or muscle) and this week I was going to get back to my routine. Do I really need to wait until the muscle doesn't hurt anymore to start exercising again?? Today was my weights day along with an hour on the elliptical. It takes me FOREVER to lose 1 stinking pound and now I have this set back... ughhh
I've heard people say if you are in sore, do your work out; if you are in pain, take the day off. Since you say you are not in 'tons of pain', I think you should go ahead and do your work-out. I often exercise on sore muscles then by the time I am done my muscles are not sore anymore and I feel a ton better (physically and psychologically). Be sure to stretch really well before, take it easy and listen to your body.
And don't strain the muscle - a little walking may be okay as long as you don't feel pain, but putting more stress on a strained muscle can delay the healing process by months. It might be a bit hard to do the classical RICE for the glutes, but see what you can do in that direction ;)
Depends if it really is your glute or your piriformis? You can get a tight piriformis in your bum when you have tight hips and especially from running, that would have to be stretched/ rubbed loose. Get a tennis ball or foam roller, cross your ankle over your knee and then sit/roll over the sore spot. It will hurt, then release. Even if you tore your glute a bit of massaging it won't hurt it. Unless you had a sudden movement or ran hard hills while you glute was flexed I don't think you strained your glute but a doc would know better. Piriformis pain can radiate down your leg a bit too.
I've had pulled bum muscles many times, and I think a few days of rest, some moist heat like a damp towel or bath, and massage worked well. Every morning and night I'd massage my bum with a warm, damp cloth on it, or in the shower.
A stretch you can do for the bum is very similar to what jett69 suggested. But instead of sitting, you balance yourself on one leg while slowly and carefully pulling your heel in towards your groin. Your knee should be parallel to the ground. The best place to grab your foot is on the ankle, and keep the lifted leg soft and the foot flexed. Then, as you get more limber, try lifting your heel onto the top of your hip. But don't get over eager with it, it can hurt your knee if you do it to fast!
There is also a smaller muscle under the maximus. I can't remeber the name right now, but you might have stressed that one.
Ugh! I feel your pain, literally! I hurt the same area about 1 month ago and have still not returned to prior activity level. I was having radiating pain, though, so I think it was my piriformis muscle (under the glut) that was tightening up and pressing on my sciatic nerve. I have been stretching more than ever, getting massages, icing, and above all--very light exercise! That is killing me because I've lost 20 pounds and reached my goal weight but I'm afraid that I will gain. So far I haven't, but any time I try to run more than 15 minutes I pay for it for days. Take it easy and gradually increase your exercise. Not sure how old you are, I'm 38, so I know it will take longer than it would have at 16. Good luck!