Harry Hood
Returning to running after 3 weeks off 12/23/2006 5:35PM Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I had to take 3 weeks off due to what I tought was a tibial stress fracture. Symptoms were their localized pain on bone etc...I took 2 weeks off completely and just tried to forget about it. At the end of week 2 I seen an orthopedic doctor who perscribed an MRI scheduled for next week. Just this past week(week 3) I was feeling no pain at all in the area so I did a run/walk for a half hour every other day, than today ran for a 1/2 hour stright again I feel no pain at all.It's weird it was a sure sighn of a stress fracture 3 weeks ago now I can't even remember what it felt like.

Anyways because of my findings I'm starting to run again. Pre injury this is what I was doing during my base-
M-30 min easy
T-60min w/ tempo
W-45 min easy
TH-60 min easy
F-30 min easy
S-45 min easy
SU-90 min easy/progression

During the last 3 weeks I have been cycling for maybe half the time I would have spent running. For the life of me I could not simulate a running heart rate for even 5 mins. Week 3 did inculde those short bouts of running of 5 min alterd with 5 min walks. I'm actually considering just canceling my MRI and just going back into my normal schedule. Does anyone think that would be a bad idea? I read somewhere that it takes the same amount of time that you were off to regain your old level of fitness. Taking another 3 weeks just to get back to my old volume seems a bit steep.

Any thoughts would be appreciated.
John Malcovich
RE: Returning to running after 3 weeks off 12/23/2006 7:27PM - in reply to Harry Hood Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
I disagree with your post.. I think you double it to regain the fitness you once had. This is from personal experiences as I have been injured most of my career, and noticed that it takes a lot longer to get back into shape the way you were before the injury. You probably had a stress reaction.
Harry Hood
RE: Returning to running after 3 weeks off 12/23/2006 8:11PM - in reply to John Malcovich Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
WOW!! 6 weeks to get back to my old volume, that seems steep. Even with the cross training I did? What is a stress reaction? I know the pain was locolized directly on the bone and the orthopedic tends to believe it is a stress fracture but I'm starting to think shin splints. In the two weeks off I did strength exercises for my shins and when I started running I wore a lift on my short leg(what I believe caused the injury). I'm not getting my hopes up but the little running i did last week didn't hurt at all, not when running or after. Is it possible this can in fact be a stress fracture? The doctor said absolutly no running for at least another 6 weeks. Do stress fractures go away and come back?
been in your shoes
RE: Returning to running after 3 weeks off 12/23/2006 9:24PM - in reply to Harry Hood Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
i've had stress fractures before and there will come a time around week 3 when the pain is gone, but it doesnt mean that it is fully healed. fractures take 6-8 (and maybe even longer depending on how bad they are) weeks to heal up before you can start running again. if you dont let them heal all the way they will come back and you will have to go through all of this again. x rays 60% of the time dont show stress fractures but bone scans do. when you do return to running, the progression should be very little and working your way up to higher milage SLOWLY. talk to a trainer or sports meds doctor for a mileage plan. 10% a week is usually the rule, and that goes for lifts on your legs too such as lunges. as for cross training, anything as far as swimming, water running, biking, and ellipticals are good and just go at a level that will get your heart rate up and you may need to stay on there longer but it will maintain your fitness just fine. that shouldnt be a huge problem.
Harry Hood
RE: Returning to running after 3 weeks off 12/23/2006 10:06PM - in reply to been in your shoes Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
the pain from a stress fracture will go away before it's healed? Maybe I should stay off it completely than. I find it weird all the sudden I can't even locate the spot that it used to hurt.
RE: Returning to running after 3 weeks off 12/24/2006 6:10AM - in reply to Harry Hood Reply | Return to Index | Report Post
It was probably a stress reaction (a precursor to a stress fracture). I've had several of both. In my experience, I needed to wait about two weeks from the time that there was no pain to the touch. Definitely don't run if you have any pain in the leg when doing single leg hops. If it was a stress reaction, you're probably fine to start a gradual return to running. It should take 4 or 5 weeks of running to get back to decent volume.