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Cmonster
March 18th, 2009, 07:51 AM
Last january I was forced to takes 2 weeks off from the pool due to some upper back/neck pain. A few changes like chest stretching and ergonomics at work seemed to resolve the problem. Now, I have a muscle tighness to a point that it actually pulls my shoulders toward my ears with a pain that radiates to my elbows. I can not swim at all right now. It's hard to determine what caused it, maybe my new medicine ball workout...who knows.

Anyway, Has anyone gone through this? What did you do to get rid of it? I'm headed to get a shot of butorphanol so i can at least concentrate on something rather than pain. The shot sucks because it kills todays run workouts. I've read a lot of the previus posts and didn't see much help. :cane:

Donna
March 18th, 2009, 08:34 AM
Time to learn trigger point therapy or find a good massage therapist.

Learning how to find and work your trigger points really helps me to continue to swim thru various muscle issues. It is cheap too! Since you learn to help yourself. I found the Trigger Point Therapy Workbook to be the best investment I have ever made.

I originally learned about this when I felt the side of my face aching like I needed a root canal done. To my surprise all my pain was caused by a muscle knot under my jaw. Once that was worked out the pain was gone, but it did take several days of ice and massage to get it fixed.

Cmonster
March 18th, 2009, 10:40 AM
My wife is a massage therapist, she worked it over and it felt fine for a few hours. I just went to the doc who gave me ibuprofen, musle relaxer, and a pain killer...all very mild but, together i'm hoping it will be Super relief.

problem is that i'm out of the water for a few days, then i go on vataion for a week. that means in 14 days i will only have 2 workouts totaling aboy 6000 yds. this is not good. :badday:

Donna
March 18th, 2009, 11:29 AM
You might try a massage followed by an EASY swim just to loosen up. Alternating heat and ice might help too. For me I had to continually work the muscles for 3 days before I got relief. When your wife is not available you might try leaning against a tennis ball and you can control the depth of the pressure.

You are lucky to have a massage therapist readily available at your whim.

Speedo
March 18th, 2009, 12:29 PM
I had this problem a few months back when I started a new, and sort of intense, weight program that works your shoulders hard. I kept my yardage the same. I ended up with intense upper back pain at the shoulder blades and the tips of my elbows were severely tendonitis'd (a word?). I kept the weight program up (and am still on it) but took loads of ibuprofen and lightly stretched for a few months until it started to fade.

This all happened when I upp'ed the weights. So if you are looking for a cause, maybe you're right about the medicine ball. Any other stuff you've added recently? 3 months later, my elbow pain is still there but better, and my upper back has improved greatly. I attribute this to getting used to the weights and unfortunately, the ibuprofen. Hope this helps.

Cmonster
March 18th, 2009, 01:08 PM
You are lucky to have a massage therapist readily available at your whim.


I wish. A home massage typically comes with a big dose of eye rolling and a "are you kidding me". But in times of need.

I just took a roud of pain meds so i can actally get something done. i can feel the golfball sized knot that sits right on my right shoulder blade. i think i'll take an off day. thursday morning i'll put in 3-4k easy and then hit the hot tub for a bit. hopefully i'll be back to normal soon. can't let too many yards slip away.

Maybe all this core work is getting to me. i no longer use a weight bench as everything is on a stability ball with dumbells. maybe too much too suddenly.

Donna
March 18th, 2009, 03:50 PM
Since you know where the knot is best thing is ice it till it is numb then work on it with a tennis ball between your back and the wall. Once the numbness wears off and your working it starts to really hurt ice it again. Then periodically do this several times a day. Drink LOTS of water and you will be back to normal in no time. Good Luck.

Daaaave
March 18th, 2009, 04:07 PM
Timely post (for me, at least). I woke up this morning with an awful muscle spasm and knot in my mid-back, right side. Normally, I'd take a day out of the pool or at least take it really easy in workout, combined with advil, light stretching, hot showers, etc.

Problem is, the meet I've been training months for is this and next weekend. I'm swimming the mile this saturday, and several events over three days the following weekend. I don't want to lose any conditioning, but I certainly don't want to injure myself further.

I'm wondering if I'm better off:
a) resting + icing/heating tonight, no swim
b) light swim tonight to stay loose
c) swim full workout tonight to maintain conditioning, on track with pre-meet speed/pacework, provided the pain is manageable

Has anyone swam through a really tight back and lived to tell about it?

Cmonster
March 18th, 2009, 05:03 PM
Timely post (for me, at least). I woke up this morning with an awful muscle spasm and knot in my mid-back, right side. Normally, I'd take a day out of the pool or at least take it really easy in workout, combined with advil, light stretching, hot showers, etc.

Problem is, the meet I've been training months for is this and next weekend. I'm swimming the mile this saturday, and several events over three days the following weekend. I don't want to lose any conditioning, but I certainly don't want to injure myself further.

I'm wondering if I'm better off:
a) resting + icing/heating tonight, no swim
b) light swim tonight to stay loose
c) swim full workout tonight to maintain conditioning, on track with pre-meet speed/pacework, provided the pain is manageable

Has anyone swam through a really tight back and lived to tell about it?


I am currentyl the example of not swimming through it. Read the above posts. loks like a day of rest on hot/cold therapy w/ some massage. that's what i'm in for. Let me know how this all works out for you.

Donna
March 18th, 2009, 09:01 PM
I am the example of always swimming through it. I just modify my stroke and speed so that it does not hurt as bad. Take it slow but keep moving and use the ICE/Trigger Point Therapy to work the muscle knots out several times a day. Drink plenty of water. It usually takes about 3 days of several times a day to get it worked out.

I actually have an issue right now in my right bicep that is caused by a few knots in my mid back.

Before a race make sure you work your known trigger points out even if they don't yet exist, just don't do deep pressure if things are ok.

Good luck.

Cmonster
March 19th, 2009, 12:30 PM
So get this. I took the muscle relaxers, naproxen, and ultram yesterday and through the night. i did the hot/cold therapy with a little bit of trigger point. I woke up at 415 to swim. sat up and felt a little sore thats it. i went a swam an easy 4000 to feel it out. i still felt the knot but pain went from an 8 to 3. no nagging pain or radiating. i just feel bruised. I am so happy this seems under control for the time being. :)

Daaaave
March 19th, 2009, 02:04 PM
Cmonster, that's encouraging news, thanks for the update. I swam last night, couldn't do flip turns and went really light. I felt a little better after workout than before, but not great. Rolled on a roll-tube after practice and a couple times later at home, several Advil.

Woke up this morning worse than ever. Did a couple heat-ice cycles and went to work late. But I just got an aggressive massage and I've gone from thinking I'll have to scratch the 1650 on saturday to maybe not. I'm going to swim tonight, just another set of heat-ice cycles and lots of rest and hydration.

My only regret is that I won't have access to anything other than over the counter meds till the race. Seems like the relaxers work wonders.

Donna
March 19th, 2009, 03:40 PM
I never take pain meds, rarely Ibuprophen. I am glad you are both starting to be on the mend. It is a slow process but you need to keep in tune with your body and force yourself atleast 1 week out from a major meet to get a deep tissue massage. You will probably hurt from this for 2 days but it is well worth the prevention. Drink plenty of water to flush out the toxins.

The week of Nationals I usually get a massage on Monday that way by Thursday all of the pressure point ache is gone and I am usually feeling great.

Become your own best therapist. Good Luck to both of your.

orca1946
March 19th, 2009, 03:48 PM
Sometimes the hardest thing to do is slow down the intense workouts! We do not like to think of ourselves as anythimg but perfect?!

Cmonster
March 20th, 2009, 07:49 AM
Cmonster, that's encouraging news, thanks for the update. I swam last night, couldn't do flip turns and went really light. I felt a little better after workout than before, but not great. Rolled on a roll-tube after practice and a couple times later at home, several Advil.

Woke up this morning worse than ever. Did a couple heat-ice cycles and went to work late. But I just got an aggressive massage and I've gone from thinking I'll have to scratch the 1650 on saturday to maybe not. I'm going to swim tonight, just another set of heat-ice cycles and lots of rest and hydration.

My only regret is that I won't have access to anything other than over the counter meds till the race. Seems like the relaxers work wonders.

I found that using a topical Ibuprofen helped, when i applied it i isolated the sore musle and applied pressure until it went soft and the pain subsided. i did this 4 times a day. In terms of Rx drugs and stuff i never take them unless i have no choice. my pain was bad enough where i had to. Yesterday I got 4hrs in, which is great considering i couldn't even workout on wed. The ice/heat helped as well. good luck.