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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I’m reaching out to you all as I’m at my wits end. I’ve had a dull ache in the front of my right quad for almost 11 months that just won’t shift. I feel it whenever I use my weight on the muscles – daily walking, using stairs, etc. I don’t feel any discomfort when resting and the muscles are relaxed. It’s not a sharp pain but it’s a nagging, constant dull achy tight stiff feeling across the front of the thigh only, from above the knee and up 3/4 of the thigh. It feels deep in the leg. I can feel it whenever I tense the muscle too.

I’m currently a 26 yr old healthy female and up until 11 months ago I was a fitness addict. I was at the gym 4-5 days a week for 2 hours a time, doing 75% cardio (treadmill/crosstrainer) and 25% strength training. Admittedly, I dived into fitness quite naively. I pushed my body to the limit, didn’t take rest days, never warmed up, and I under-ate my calories by around 700-800 daily. I did end up entering the BMI underweight zone and lost my period too from the under-eating and over-exercising, so this of course made my body weak. My issue with my leg gradually came on over a couple of weeks as I remember ignoring it as I increased my milage on the treadmill, assuming it was a light strain and hoping it would go away soon. I never had a particular injury that caused this chronic issue.

After a few weeks and realising the ache wasn’t improving, I quit the gym. I couldn’t enjoy my cardio or squat classes as the ache was constantly nagging me. I realised I needed a break to gain weight and get my period back, which I did. Fast forward 2 months of rest and no improvement to my thigh. Since then, I’ve seen my doctor twice and 2 different physiotherapists and all are stumped as to what the issue is. They’re confused as my range of motion in my legs and hips is fine. My doctor guessed it could be runner’s knee but I doubt that as my knee feels fine and I can squat/lunge but just with that stiff feeling. I’ve also seen an osteopath who assessed I don’t have any knotted muscles.

Following endless internet research, I’ve tried acupuncture, stretching, foam rolling, deep tissue massage, and 7 weeks of quad strengthening exercises at home 4-5 days per week (single leg squats/lunges/resistance band leg pulls/wall sits) and absolutely no improvement. KT tape provides some relief but that just masks the issue.

I don’t know what else to do. I’ve run out of options, spent so much money getting advice and no professional knows what the issue is. I really want to get back into fitness (sensibly this time) but this chronic issue is holding me back and making my daily life a misery and it’s so frustrating every day. I even hate walking because this ache is nagging me whenever I move. I deeply regret mistreating my body and pushing it too far.

This is a bit of a long shot but has anyone here experienced this issue before? Or can one of you knowledgeable (and much more sensible) people advise what I should do?

Thanks all,

Hayley
 

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You have to remember that pain is an indication there may be something wrong but may also just be something in your head. The longer you have it the more likely the latter is.
Why is it actually stopping you train if it's only dull?
 

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It doesn't sound familiar to me but has anyone mentioned or tested for a stress fracture? At any rate it sounds like you have never rested the quads, but have instead pushed them further. Try some rest from high inensity on the quads.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I did suggest this to my doctor but she was adamant it isn’t a stress fracture as I’d be in more pain. I’ve rested for a fair few months with no improvement which is very frustrating, not too sure what else I can do.
 
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