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Side Ache While Running...

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning' started by GirlWithGlock, Feb 25, 2005.

  1. GirlWithGlock

    GirlWithGlock

    239
    0
    Nov 9, 2004
    Minnesota
    While running on the treadmill (or outside), I get a side ache almost every time. Not always in the same place, but sometimes it's bad enough that I have to cut my run short and walk the rest of the time.

    I'm wondering if anyone knows what may cause this or if they know what I can do to prevent it from happening.

    Thanks in advance.
    Carla
     
  2. k2ue

    k2ue Member

    114
    1
    Sep 27, 2004
    Victor, NY
    Probably the spleen -- I used to experience that in my youth, but grew out of it. A little internet searching on pain and spleen should find some authoratative discussion of what it means, and what to do about it.
     


  3. Mister Joshua

    Mister Joshua Sig Addiction

    167
    0
    Jan 21, 2005
    Tampa, Florida
    Either that, or you are simply getting side splints... I got them when I was young, but don't get them as much with conditioning. I noticed that if I didn't have a full stomach of water or anything else, I would get them less.
     
  4. git_r_dun0405

    git_r_dun0405 5FDP

    324
    0
    May 26, 2004
    Auburn Alabama
    Dont eat or drink anything 30 mins before running. Helps me.;)
     
  5. GirlWithGlock

    GirlWithGlock

    239
    0
    Nov 9, 2004
    Minnesota
    Thanks you guys. I appreciate the responses. I will check into the pain and spleen issue mentioned. I typically try to work out in the morning before I have eaten anything, but sometimes I do go in the early evening before dinner. I'll have to pay attention to if there is a pattern as to when it's worse.

    This may sound like a stupid question, but I don't know your ages. When you say you "grew out of it", at what age was that? And also when you mentioned "when I was younger", what age was that?
     
  6. k2ue

    k2ue Member

    114
    1
    Sep 27, 2004
    Victor, NY
    I was referring to "growing out of it" in my 20's (I'm now 59).
     
  7. ubimow

    ubimow

    985
    0
    May 13, 2002
    I used to run a lot and I would get side pain frequently. Then I started stretching my abdominals before running and doing ab work on my days off. This seemed to help. There are several ways to stretch your abs. Make sure you stretch the side areas where you are getting pain. Also make sure your breathing is correct while running, it could be your diaphram.
     
  8. GirlWithGlock

    GirlWithGlock

    239
    0
    Nov 9, 2004
    Minnesota
    ubimow...That could also be the culprit. I am definitely guilty of not stretching enough before a run. I do run on my every-other-day weight-lifting days for about 20 minutes, but run 30-40 minutes in between weight-lifting days. I'm going to pay more attention to if it's worse on the days that I'm not lifting weights first.

    Again, I appreciate the suggestions. Hopefully I'll figure it out soon. :)
     
  9. Mister Joshua

    Mister Joshua Sig Addiction

    167
    0
    Jan 21, 2005
    Tampa, Florida
    I am 26 now, "younger" for me means when I was a teen. I used to get really bad side splints in wrestling practice. When I started drinking room temperature water, and less of it, during practices, and gained the conditioning to control my breathing as I ran, I didn't have the problems as much.
     
  10. Dresden

    Dresden Is it Plastic??

    125
    0
    Aug 1, 2001
    South Louisiana
    It's a common symptom for runners...go to runnersworld.com or just google "side stitches"
     
  11. Willard

    Willard Who, me?

    700
    23
    Jan 2, 2000
    Yes, if sounds like a classic "side stitch". This is caused by a cramping of the diaphragm, the muscle that lies just below your lungs, and powers your breathing.

    A couple of things that help:

    1) Breathe more deeply, letting your belly move in and out as you breathe.

    2) When you exhale, blow the air out through pursed lips.

    If the pain persists, do this: take a medium breath, and hold it. While holding it, push your belly way out. Then, let your belly "suck in" while you lift your chest up high. Basically, you are using the air (in the breath you are holding) to stretch you diaphragm back and forth. So, think about moving the air into your belly, then up to your chest, back to your belly, etc. This will stretch and relax the cramping in your diaphragm. BTW, this can be a great stretch to do at bedtime to really relax before going to sleep.

    As your overall conditioning improves, the stiches should go away.
     
  12. GirlWithGlock

    GirlWithGlock

    239
    0
    Nov 9, 2004
    Minnesota
    Thank you for the tips! I am new to running so this makes sense. (A few weeks new.) I was mainly using the eliptical machine but wanted to change things up a bit so moved to the treadmill. I never get these "side stiches" doing any other physical activity, only the running. Hopefully between reading more about them and getting a little better conditioned with the running it won't happen as often and eventually not at all. :)

    Thanks again!
     
  13. GirlWithGlock

    GirlWithGlock

    239
    0
    Nov 9, 2004
    Minnesota
    Willard, the same advice you gave me was given to me today by a personal trainer at the gym. Worked great!! I was able to run the entire time today keeping the side ache at bay using that exact breathing technique. Thanks so much!
     
  14. runnergirl

    runnergirl

    24
    0
    Dec 5, 2004
    Good advice here already on breathing and streching...

    I'll add that the longer you run, the less frequent they'll become. If you continue to run 4-5 days a week, in 6 months you'll have forgotten what a sideache feels like. You can also condidtion yourself to eat and drink moderatly immediatly before running and not be affected. If you're running in the AM on an empty stomach, you might be faster/feel stronger if you ate 200-300 cals beforehand.

    Also, doing a lot of ab work the evening/day before can also be a major factor. It's the only thing that can still give be a sideache.

    My breathing meathod is to blow out forcefully when the foot on the opposite side of the ache hits the ground. Concentrating on breathing distracts from the pain and forces you to use the diaphgragm. If it's so bad you have to stop, stop, streach your whole torso, and start again slowly. It's better than having to walk....
     
  15. gunguru1

    gunguru1

    145
    0
    Dec 8, 2002
    Knoxville, TN
    I find that if I eat anything within 2 hours of my scheduled run I will usually get a stitch in my side. When I was a beginner, I usually had to wait 3 hours after a meal before running. Hope this helps.

    gunguru1
     
  16. KeithS

    KeithS CLM

    135
    0
    Sep 30, 2003
    Arizona
    Funny, that I have been running off and on for 30 + years (I'm 55 now). Side pain was frequently an issue if I drank water within 30 minutes or so before running. My running had been, for the most part, on the streets. A couple of years ago, I began running some of the hill trails here in Phoenix (T-Bird Park). To cover the 3 hills (about 9 miles) I run, I do need to drink while running. While doing this, I have never experienced side pain. Point I'm making is that I'm wondering if the constantly varying pace, speed, and grades makes a difference....maybe it's the redundancy of the repetitive movements on flat surfaces that contribute to side pains?
     
  17. GirlWithGlock

    GirlWithGlock

    239
    0
    Nov 9, 2004
    Minnesota
    Thanks for the advice, everyone. Putting all of this together has helped me a lot. It's already getting easier to get through my run, and even run longer. I appreciate all of your input! Thanks again! :)