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Discussion Starter #1
I seem to be jinxed with my race preparations - 2 months before the Great Manchester 10k I was flying, then got a groin injury swimming which laid me up for 6 weeks...

Now my training for the City of Manchester 10k was going well, and I was knocking the times off and PBing in training and getting my confidence up. So I go away for the weekend, jump on a boat, stumble and smash my ribs against something very hard with all my body weight. Winded me at the time but in general there's little discomfort - trouble is, taking very deep breaths hurts, as does moving around in certain ways, turning over in bed is quite painful - I think the ribs are just bruised, as the pain is not so sharp to indicate a break or crack - it feels more like the muscles around the ribs, and although it is gasping at the worst, it is not screaming in agony...

The question is, how long should I rest, as I am worried that the longer I rest, the more my hard work over the last couple of months evaporates and I end up entering my second race only intending to finish (again!). Then again, if I don't rest, maybe I will end up making the ribs worse and not be able to run at all :(

I know it's different for everyone, but as a rule will my fitness start to disappear pretty rapidly or could I afford another 4-5 days off to see if the ribs start to get better (my last run was 4 days ago). Or should I just try a short, easy run to see how I get on?

Thanks for any advice (especially from any runners unfortunate enough to have experienced rib damage!!) :eek:
 

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Hi Rob

Sorry to hear about your accident. Are you able to go for a brisk walk or a very slow run without any pain? - If so, I'd try that for a few days until the injury gets better. If I remember rightly from your earlier posts, you were making fairly rapid progress - so a week or so of gentle exercise might even help your preparations for the Manchester 10k.

Good luck

Slowsteve
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the words of encouragement Steve - I can do a brisk walk without too much trouble, so will try a slow run tomorrow and see how I get on :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
No go I'm afraid - barely managed 200 very slow yards, and had to turn around and walk back home.

At first the jolting from the running was uncomfortable, but as soon as I started breathing deeply it added to the discomfort from the jolting and made it seem like it was being prodded from both sides :( In fact the pain was bearable, and I felt I could run 5 or 10k with it - but experience has taught me that its not worth sacrificing the next 2 months for the sake of one run - I've run with little niggles that have gone away in the course of a run (probably due to endorphins etc) - only to end up unable to walk a few hours later, which laid me off for quite few weeks last time round - so as I could feel the run really aggravating my ribs, I decided to stop and take the walk of shame back, getting funny looks from this chap I had only run just run past.

If I can take a positive, it's that I have learned to listen to my body and know when things aren't right, and have lost the dangerous belief that I am invincible! - I just hope a week's rest is sufficient, and not the 4-6 weeks it takes some people, as that would mean I am out of the 10k in July :( Fortunately I have always been a pretty quick healer, so am keeping my fingers crossed - will just have to rest as much as I can.

I may try my exercise bike tomorrow and see how the breathing is without the jolting of running.

Guess I am offroad for a bit :mad:
 

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The bike seems like a good idea Rob.

I`m sure it wont be long till your back out there.

All the best.

Dave.
 

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Sorry to hear that Rob - I know how frustrating it can be when you're making good progress only to get held up by an injury.

You're probably doing the right thing by giving it time to heal. There's still over 3 weeks to the Manchester 10k so you never know... :)
 

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In boxing and the mixed martial arts (cage fighting basically)i do. I get bruised ribs lots!

Best thing i find is tiger balm, gets really deep into the muscles and soft tissue. And for any one who gets shin pains....its great for that.

Iv got a few jars if you want some.....pm me and ill send you one out.

The way to check to see if its broken is to press in, and if it hurts when you release more then when you press...its a break. Mind id deffo go see a spoc, to be sure

Stacka
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Stacka said:
In boxing and the mixed martial arts (cage fighting basically)i do. I get bruised ribs lots!

Best thing i find is tiger balm, gets really deep into the muscles and soft tissue. And for any one who gets shin pains....its great for that.

Iv got a few jars if you want some.....pm me and ill send you one out.

The way to check to see if its broken is to press in, and if it hurts when you release more then when you press...its a break. Mind id deffo go see a spoc, to be sure

Stacka
Thanks for the offer Stacka - they hurt more when pressed in, so I don't think it's a break, I think there may be torn cartilage as something seems to move about (it's a similar feeling to how my knee cartilage sometimes moves about). They are still tender, much worse in a morning and get easier (mind you that could be my breakfast of painkillers!)

I tried exercise bike for half an hour today - my deep breathing seems to have become less painful, I worked up a good sweat, and it almost felt a bit like I'd been for a run by the time I'd finished - at least have some exercise I can do now which doesn't seem to annoy the ribs. Will just have to wait for that magic moment when I feel the pain has gone enough to try being more adventurous and maybe try a little jog
 

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Sounds like you could be making progress Rob.

Lets hope things are moving in the right direction........

All the best.

Dave.
 

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Your fitness wouldn't (or shouldn't!) fall off over a period as short as 4-5 days... total rest for just over 2 weeks lost me some fitness, but if you've been able to hit the bike then I'd be surprised if you lost any fitness at all, and as has already been suggested, your body may even be grateful of the rest period! :d
 

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I cracked a rib or two last January (2007) whilst running. Got both legs ensnared in a loop of wire. Landed heavily on my left side with my arm underneath me, so my thigh landed on my hand, and my ribs landed on my elbow. So really it was my elbow which did the most damage. Apart from the shock, I didn't feel too bad at the time, and I managed the rest of the run home. But as the day went on, the pain increased to such an extent that breathing was painful. Yawning was worse! Don't even mention coughing and sneezing...:eek:

Five days later, whilst walking home from work, I tried a bit of a jog. Probably a couple of hundred metres. The jarring effect was painful, but not too bad. So, the morning after I went for a proper run. Here's an extract from that morning's diary entry:

"... Best described as awkward and painful. Chest pain due to jarring and breathing. Was consciously trying to slow breathing down at times, which seemed ridiculous. Think I was also trying to restrict arm movement on left side also..."
That run lasted for just over 52 min. The day after, I ran for over 53 minutes, and wrote:

"... Running without trying to move... that's what it felt like most of the time. Very aware of trying to keep breathing as shallow as possible..."

Took another 5 days off after that before starting to run again. Was still in a great deal of pain, but able to move more freely. After a few more days, there weren't even any diary references regarding the chest pain; although I can remember that it was over 4 months before I could lie on my left side in bed.

Essentially Rob, I don't think that running will make your ribs any worse (as it's a non-running injury, I suppose)... but the actual pain may be worse whilst you run.:( It all comes down to how much pain you're prepared to put up with, and whether enduring that pain is worth it to preserve your fitness.
 

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Hope you are better soon Rob and back running. Great info Pedestrian.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
pedestrian said:
I cracked a rib or two last January (2007) whilst running. Got both legs ensnared in a loop of wire. Landed heavily on my left side with my arm underneath me, so my thigh landed on my hand, and my ribs landed on my elbow. So really it was my elbow which did the most damage. Apart from the shock, I didn't feel too bad at the time, and I managed the rest of the run home. But as the day went on, the pain increased to such an extent that breathing was painful. Yawning was worse! Don't even mention coughing and sneezing...:eek:

Five days later, whilst walking home from work, I tried a bit of a jog. Probably a couple of hundred metres. The jarring effect was painful, but not too bad. So, the morning after I went for a proper run. Here's an extract from that morning's diary entry:

"... Best described as awkward and painful. Chest pain due to jarring and breathing. Was consciously trying to slow breathing down at times, which seemed ridiculous. Think I was also trying to restrict arm movement on left side also..."
That run lasted for just over 52 min. The day after, I ran for over 53 minutes, and wrote:

"... Running without trying to move... that's what it felt like most of the time. Very aware of trying to keep breathing as shallow as possible..."

Took another 5 days off after that before starting to run again. Was still in a great deal of pain, but able to move more freely. After a few more days, there weren't even any diary references regarding the chest pain; although I can remember that it was over 4 months before I could lie on my left side in bed.

Essentially Rob, I don't think that running will make your ribs any worse (as it's a non-running injury, I suppose)... but the actual pain may be worse whilst you run.:( It all comes down to how much pain you're prepared to put up with, and whether enduring that pain is worth it to preserve your fitness.
Very interesting thanks for that - I am willing to endure the pain, my main worry was making things worse and prolonging the whole thing, but seems from your experience that shouldn't be the case.

As it happens I was forced to run for a bus last night, and it felt OK - the pain seems to subside later in the day, so maybe I should try a later run instead of late morning/early afternoon and see how the ribs handle...
 

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Discussion Starter #15
An update with good news. Thanks to pedestrian's post, I thought it was worth trying a run, so I went for a moderate 5k. It felt great to be putting my shorts on, although my warm up wasn't as energetic as normal (no pushups or situps just yet!). Felt good to get out into the sunshine, and I was almost as nervous as my last race when I pushed the start button on my timer and set off. Ribs handled well, but it might be the two weeks rest - they did twinge at times, but I didn't try and push too hard.

Mid way through it became hard work every time I tried to increase my pace a little - not from the ribs, but from the lost fitness (I think). Anyway I trundled round 5k in a full 1.5 minutes slower than my time 3 weeks ago, but it was good just to set a modest target and finish for my first run back. I think I have lost a little physical fitness, but noticed that I had a fear of pushing myself harder because I didn't have a run for the last 15 days - that mental fitness will come back with time, I am just glad I can run again :d And so glad it looks like I will be able to make the start line of the City of Manchester 10k afterall :)

Thanks for all the support while I was incapacitated - and it was so useful to hear pedestrian's experience, or I might have just stayed laid up until the last vestiges of pain were gone :rolleyes:
 

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Why is it that most runners self diagnose injury's ? It does sound like bruising but maybe worth a shot at getting the GP to confirm it? Rest is imperitive and as you said earlier it could take 4-6 weeks to improve. If you can take brufen and co-cocodamol combined then that would benefit and a muscle rub on the affected part too.

Cycling is a good idea in the interim but don't push yourself too hard.

Here's hoping you make a swift recovery. Frustrating isn't it? You have my every sympathy

Nat
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Why is it that most runners self diagnose injury's ? It does sound like bruising but maybe worth a shot at getting the GP to confirm it? Rest is imperitive and as you said earlier it could take 4-6 weeks to improve. If you can take brufen and co-cocodamol combined then that would benefit and a muscle rub on the affected part too.

Cycling is a good idea in the interim but don't push yourself too hard.

Here's hoping you make a swift recovery. Frustrating isn't it? You have my every sympathy

Nat
If you'd met my GP you'd know why I self diagnose. Last time I saw him for back pain he just prescribed ibuprofen (for £5 at the time when a packet from boots was 50p or something!). I won't tell you what he said when I went to see him for stress/depression a number of years back, although the words "ridiculous" and "stop wasting my time" spring to mind :huh:

Anyway, more good news, I did another 5k today - and knocked the 1.5 minutes back off, so am back to where I was before, I was flying at times - just need to keep up the schedule now.

It was enjoyable in a different way to venture out into the rain and cold - on supposedly the first day of summer :eek:
 

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If you'd met my GP you'd know why I self diagnose. Last time I saw him for back pain he just prescribed ibuprofen (for £5 at the time when a packet from boots was 50p or something!). I won't tell you what he said when I went to see him for stress/depression a number of years back, although the words "ridiculous" and "stop wasting my time" spring to mind :huh:

Anyway, more good news, I did another 5k today - and knocked the 1.5 minutes back off, so am back to where I was before, I was flying at times - just need to keep up the schedule now.

It was enjoyable in a different way to venture out into the rain and cold - on supposedly the first day of summer :eek:
Change your doctor. It is your right and you don't have to give a reason.

Never accept less than you deserve especially where your health is concerned
 
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