Ready to Race Series: Stress Fracture

Ready to Race Series: Stress Fracture


If you suddenly change your training volume, in particular you are really changing the type of surface you are running on, those things can create some really significant consequences. So stress fractures are really an overuse injury now involving the bone. And the bone, once it accumulates a certain amount of stress it has a hard time healing itself in some cases. Essentially what happens is as your muscles fatigue and they can’t absorb the force that they need to during running that stress gets transmitted to your bone. And bone is made of protein, to some extent, but also a lot of calcium, which is hard. And so, once it starts to break, if it keeps on getting stressed in the wrong way, it has a very hard time healing itself. There’s often focal tenderness, Sharp pain that’s often much more focal than I mentioned in the shin, at least. Having swelling is common. And then some of the things you can do are things like what’s called “Hop Test” so you can kind of hop up and down on that one leg, and typically that won’t be painful. But if you are getting that sharp, typical pain when you’re hitting the ground, that’s not a good sign. There’s been studies that look when you are under tremendous psychological stress, changes in cortisol levels, or your ability to heal and all this kind of stuff. But more so it’s important for you to just keep in mind that you need to maintain adequate nutrition, make sure that you are getting a good amount of protein, and just overall calories to allow your body to heal itself. Key with this is making sure that if you do start to feel anything that sounds like this you really need to stop your training and not joke around with it. Because it can progress and cause major problems. If you do have a stress fracture and you’re in that case where walking isn’t painful and the only thing that you have trouble with is running, we can get you in an AlterG and take up to 70 percent of your body weight off so that you can still run and train as your tissues heal in a pain-free fashion so you don’t have to take time off from this.

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