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  1. #1
    chips & bier
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    Permanently sore leg muscles.... (long)

    First off: in all my years of riding and racing, this is one I (and to date my doctor) can't yet firgure out:

    Basically all the muscles on the back of my legs are sore - the same nagging, irritating soreness you have the night after you've done a long race like a marathon. No big deal per sé, but this has been lasting 3 weeks, 24 h a day. Add to that general lethargy and you visit the doctor (which I did). Blood tests for all kinds of viral and bacterial infections came up negative of course.

    So you say: take a rest. I did: been sitting on the couch for almost two weeks now (apart from work, of course ). Yesterday was my first mountain ride in a while, and today I feel like utter cr@p again. Strechting. Massages. Checked my diet. Absolutely NOTHING is helping.

    Any ideas on what may be the cause of this? It all started when a singlespeed race and a new desk job coincided. Hiddeously overgeared cycling compared with sitting in a chair for hours at a time for the first time in my life. Could I just simply be very, very tired?

  2. #2
    King of vegetarians
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    The circulation in your legs is obviously poor so the lactic acid is not flushing out.
    Work on sitting with your legs crossed or at least level with your pelvis so that your legs would have better circulation when your working.Lots of stretching breathing and massage will help but nothing beats rest,take a relaxing vacation.
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  3. #3
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    It sounds like a probable metabolic issue. You said your doc checked for viral and bacterial infections but did he do a general screen? I have seen the same symptoms with a thyroid problem, with a diabetic problem, with an iron deficiency case and a vitamin deficiency case (can't remember which vitamin was missing, probably one in the B category). Check that a general blood screen was done. Take care!!

  4. #4
    chips & bier
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    yoginasser, Pegasos, thanks for the thoughts.

    I'll check back with the doc tomorrow. I'm not sure how general the blood screen was. Decided (against better judgement) to check my weight, and I'm down a couple of pounds from my regular weight during mid-season. And that while this year I'm a tad heavier from all the fall/winter weight training. Something seems to be up, so I'll keep y'all posted.

  5. #5
    King of vegetarians
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    Feel better man and keep us posted.
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    The future is not retro proof.

  6. #6
    chips & bier
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    So, next visit to the doctor....

    Went through the blood screen and all it turned up was that I have some goofy flu-like virus. Everything else was fine / negative. Couch potato time according to the doctor. No training, no work. B12 supplement just to make sure, but it should clear if I rest.

    (still slightly dazed...confused.... etc.....)

  7. #7
    King of vegetarians
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    Well at least now ya know.Thank God it was simple,just be sure to take more rest time for yourself in the future so that your immunity will stay strong.
    Feel better Eric!
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    The future is not retro proof.

  8. #8
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    That is kick butt! The morass of unknown syndromes is a real mess to get into.

    To know what is going on, and to handle it with ease? Thank your lucky stars.


  9. #9
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    Hey now, nothing is wrong with a bit of time off. As 29Colossus said, if that's all you need, thank your lucky stars. Better still get out on your porch and just take the time to look at them. Eat well and rest well. Take care!!

  10. #10
    chips & bier
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    Cheers all.

    Underneath the pile of bicycle parts, race registrations and Rocky Mountain gear I found a bass guitar screaming for attention. It will see good use for a while! :-)

  11. #11
    chips & bier
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    Well, looks like we're back to sq. one.

    The last two days have been absolute hell. I've been sitting on the couch almost all day, and my legs feel like I've done an 8-hour race yesterday. Sitting, lying down, haging from the ceiling like a bat: I feel fine apart from the back of my legs - they just friggin' hurt. Much worse than the last two weeks.

    Can't contact the GP or the fysiotherapist at the moment (try again tomorrow), and I'm now pretty close to some race cancellations. AAAARGH.

  12. #12
    King of vegetarians
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    Did you ever try Yoga?
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  13. #13
    chips & bier
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    Must admit I've never tried. )

    At the moment I feel about twice my age (and then still in relatively poor shape). Hopefully the fysiotherapist can at least look at my spine tomorrow: one vertebrae hurts a bit when I push on it. Maybe I'm just having a hernia? Might explain the freakin' pain...

  14. #14
    King of vegetarians
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    Give gentle Yoga a try Eric,just stay away from any militant or aggressive teachers and see how you feel!
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    The future is not retro proof.

  15. #15
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    Hey Eric, just recap: how did the soreness come about? Is there anything you can do for releif (even momentary)? How old are you and how tall are you?? Finally, lie on your back on the foor-grab the underside of your knees-relax your back muscles-draw gently the knees towards your chest with your arms only (emphasize gently) and hold for 2-3 minutes. Does any of the soreness go away?? Let me know or PM me.

  16. #16
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    I also wouldn't rule out the possibility that the desk job has something to do with this. Desk jobs are horrible for a person's person. I have a friend who woke up one morning with the most excruciating back pain, and spent over a week unable to move, in constant pain, wondering what she had done. The doctor ultimately blamed the desk job, saying that they're worse on a body than moving and lifting (ex., construction) jobs. Going from being active/moving most of the day, to spending 8 hours sitting inert at a desk is a big change. Maybe try taking more frequent breaks to walk around...and if you can get away with it, eat lunch at your desk, and spend your lunch hour taking a walk. Also, your sitting posture might have something to do with it as well. You might try trading out your standard office chair with one of those big yoga balls.

  17. #17
    chips & bier
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    I'm 26, 6', and an expert cat racer. Or I was....

    The soreness in my calves started about 3 weeks after I made the move from studying/training/wrenching to an engineering job. I had fluid buildup in my calves, but I was working 8-9 hours a day with another 4-5 hours of travelling by train as well. Temporary housing and a huge adjustment in my desk and seating solved the fluid thing. Slight soreness remained, though.

    Almost four weeks ago now I did a marathon. Normally the endurance events are where I shine. From the second hour onwards, all the muscles on the back side of both legs were very sore. I've done some stupid things like riding with a broken hand, two inflamed knees, etc., but this was more painful than anything idiotic in the past. Being a 'middle of nowhere' race I had no choice but to finish. Took me about 30-40 min. longer than it would normally have, and I decided a rest week or two was definitely in order.

    Two weeks ago: Elite race. Legs felt okay except for a little tenderness in the calves. Didn't think much of it as I'd helped move some friends' stuff the night before. Lots of bookcases up 4 flights... ;-) Anyway, after 45 minutes behind the lead group my legs were gone & I called it quits for the first time in years. The pain in my legs has since then become much worse.

    I could probably describe it best as the soreness you feel after doing a really, really tough and long event, say 8 hours or more. Some days it also feels like there's a hot band travelling from the center of each buttock to the middle of my calf muscle.

    Originally it looked like I'd picked up some kind of bug, since I was coughing up junk and generally tired (normally I'm pretty hyper from 9 AM tot about 11 PM). Lab ran a pile of tests (full blood, most regular viral and bacterial options including Lyme, toxoplasmosis, etc.). All came up negative.

    Monday the pain in my left leg was so severe I was awake part of the night. It faded by morning, so I slept late, and went to the LBS for some wrenching. Felt fine. Next night same thing happened, but at the breakfast table my legs only felt a little tired. By the end of the day yesterday, however, I was in the hospital because I had the sensation my calves and feet were on fire.

    Sitting, standing, nothing gives relief except for deep stretching. Within 10 minutes the pain is back again. This morning it dawned on me that I've had a host of back problems (slipped discs, displaced stuff a couple of times, even pulled a rib joint apart a few weeks ago). Maybe, JUST maybe, something has gone haywire in my lumbar region, and that's putting pressure on a nerve somewhere?

    Went to the hospital again for X-rays this morning. The examining doc said my reflexes were fine, so no obvious nerve damage or outside pressure, but ya never know. At any rate this is doing my head in. Not only can I not ride (three HUGE races in the next month look like they won't be happening), but I can't work more than 4 hours a day either, and that bothers me much more than anything else.

    @Pegasos: I've tried what you suggested. Pain seems to go away for a couple of minutes.

    @All: A appreciate all the help and info. I realize physician is THE person to talk to (which I do), but getting a response from him or the various others involved takes quite long. ;-)

  18. #18
    chips & bier
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    double post .... AARGH

  19. #19
    "Its All Good"
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    eric - Do hope you gain som einsight into whats going on with your body, have read this post in detail. Feel for you, not knowing is the worst thing.... Do hope the pain lowers and some light at the end of the tunnel comes for you...

    Keep us posted.... Healing vibes to you bro...............
    The_Lecht_Rocks: whafe - cheeers - may i offer an official apology for the wagon wheeler "dis-belief"

  20. #20
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    Disclaimer: Take internet advice for what's its worth. Having said that....

    There are 2 categories of diseases for your doc to consider: Autoimmune & Metabolic Myopathies.

    I'm not going to get into all the details, but ask your doc to do the following if symptoms persist (he'll know what it means):

    ESR
    CRP
    ANA (with fractionation)
    CPK total
    Aldolase
    HLA-B27
    SIJ X-rays
    Electrodiagnostic studies

    If all else fails then MRI of the most painful area and potential muscle biopsy.

    Hopefully all these tests are negative, it's just a virus, and I'm only raising your anxiety. But that's what I would do based on your description.
    Last edited by The Squeaky Wheel; 07-06-2007 at 08:25 AM.
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  21. #21
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    Hi Eric, I don't want to alarm or worry you, neither do I want to make a diagnosis over the net, but, if what I proposed gave you a little momentary pain relief, then mate you need an MRI "toute de suite". Reflex and other neuro type tests don't show everything. I think I know what is happening (your account explains the problem), it's not a huge problem but it won't go away on its own, or if it does it will come back. Sorry if I sound like a fortune teller but I hope you understand open forums isn't a place to openly throw about dignosis and prescriptions.
    Last edited by Pegasos; 07-06-2007 at 12:07 PM.

  22. #22
    chips & bier
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    Cheers. If you're pointing toward surgury on my spine: with all the trouble my back has been giving me even as a teenager, somehow it just doesn't surprise me at all. ;-)

    Will press the doc for an MRI if the x-rays show up nothing next monday.

  23. #23
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    Hopefully not surgery. Your symptoms though severe enough to disrupt your normal life don't suggest a huge problem (pain doesn't count and right now pain is your friend), but they point to two interlinked conditions. An MRI will put your mind at rest and after that I can help you with the type of treatment you'll need to follow (if I am right).

  24. #24
    chips & bier
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    Ow well, we'll see next week. I hope the doc can give some feedback before I drive to Austria Tuesday night (can't cancel because I'm guide and driver...).

  25. #25
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    Ah!! that's why the quick replies, you are this side of the pond. I am in Switzerland (francophone) , make a detour on your way over to Austria, we'll melt some cheese, have some chocolate, drink some absinth and all will be good again.
    Seriously though, long drives and long hikes won't be comfortable right now and there is always the risk of further aggravating your symptoms. Since you can't cancel you have to take very frequent breaks and if you carry a back pack position it low down so it's supported by your waist mostly and by your shoulders.

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