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2168 Views 3 Replies Latest reply: Feb 6, 2011 9:31 PM by Petronio
ChicagoBlv31 Rookie 2 posts since
Feb 6, 2011
Currently Being Moderated

Feb 6, 2011 7:33 AM

Just signed up for the Chicago Marathon 2011- but I'm getting back spasms

Hi all,


I just signed up for my 1st marathon. I'm not a total newbie, I have run 2 1/2 marathons in the past and a bunch of different 5ks, 8ks. I will confess that I have neglected my running for a long time and about a month ago I decided to jump back into my sneakers and go for a run. I ran about 4 miles and felt amazing...unfortunately, the next day I woke up with the worst back pain. I went to the doctor and they said it was back spasms. But, I never experienced that before. I'm so bummed! Has anyone experienced that before? How do I keep running if the next day I am going to wake up like a zombie. I ran about 2 weeks ago and put in about 5 1/2 miles (slow and steady) I had no pain at all during the run. The next day....pain!


I refuse to give up my dream to run the Chicago Marathon...its my hometown and I want to reach that finish line! Any suggestions or experiences that you can share would be great!


Thanks a bunch.


  • Petronio Rookie 2 posts since
    Feb 6, 2011

    I am in somewhat the same situation - I'm a beginning runner, a BIG guy (214 lbs and over 6"), and have been running for 8 months. I've lately gone up to 3x/week, 4 miles per run, and two weeks ago finished a run feeling fine, but woke up with some pain and incredible stiffness in my lumbar area. It's been gradually loosening up, and I can stretch, but I still have tightness and discomfort and have not bee able to run these last two weeks (though I can walk, but need to stoop over just a degree or two.)

    I'm assuming it has something to do with NOT cooling and stretching properly at the end of the run, or my shoes. I'm also assuming it's a pure muscle problem and not a damaged inter-vertebral disc (it's not really painful, just stiffness and soreness, though it does seem to be right on the lumbar part of the spine.)

    I could use some advice on how to avoid this in the future.


    Thanks in advance to anyone who can offer advice.

  • Petronio Rookie 2 posts since
    Feb 6, 2011

    Now that you mention it - the pain is a dull, constant one. And it's not really all that painful. The lumbar area burns a bit sometimes, but mostly it's very, very stiff. When I stand straight, I find my knees automatically buckling to take some pressure off. Very wierd.

    I'm beginning to suspect that running uphill may be the culprit. I have long uphill sections in my runs, and noticed when walking around today that going uphill or downhill beyond a mild gradient puts dramatically more pressure on my now sensitized back.


    If it doesn't clear up in one more week, I'll see a doctor. Hopefully it's not disc damage, I REALLY don't want to confront something so detrimental when I've really only just begun.

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