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Oh Sh*t

Posted by Mark on 3/29/99 at 00:00 (005826)

I am thankful for finding this website, for just the other day I found out that I may have PF.

I have been scrolling through the messageboard, and I am starting to get a little worried. It seems that a lot of people do not completely recover from PF.

I am hoping to get a little feedback from some of you on the amount of time anticipated for recovery (I know that recovery cannot be generalized, but I would like to get an idea of what I may be facing). I enjoy running, playing basketball, etc, and I would like to stay active.

How long will I have to be inactive after initial diagnosis?
What are some of my alternatives for exercise (that will not aggrivate PF)?

Thank you for your help.


Re: Oh Sh*t

BarbJ on 3/29/99 at 00:00 (005828)

Mark--I have had pf for over 2 years and as for alternative exercise I have started swimming lately on the recommendation of some folks here and also a long time recommendation of my m.d. I have been pleasantly surprised at how good it makes me feel and even seems to have helped my pf (at least it has gotten somewhat better lately--I think). Before this (and I still do it a couple of times a week) I rode for 30 minutes on my stationary recumbent bike about 4 times a week. I would really like to start a weight lifting program but will need some guidance for this. I think as long as I can lift from a sitting or lying position it would be good for my bones (especially in the prevention of osteoporosis for this 'over 50' woman). Good luck to you in overcoming this.

Re: Oh Sh*t

Alicia on 3/29/99 at 00:00 (005841)

Mark: I also ride a recumbent stationary bike and would recommend swimming if you like water. There is no way to tell how quickly you might get over the PF. You can read messages from one extreme to the other. Read Scott's home page - he gives a good overview of all the alternative treatments. Read what everyone says and try everything until you find something that helps. That's all I can say - if you have a sympathetic MD, it might help, but YOU will probably figure it out before a doc does. I've had it for 6 years, bad for 6 months. What is helping me is stretching, icing, custom orthotics, cross training shoes ONLY and 3-4000mg of vitamin C daily. Good luck.

Re: Oh Sh*t

Mark on 3/29/99 at 00:00 (005844)

Alicia,

You mentioned that you you wear cross training shoes; which particular brand? I have seen New Balance and Brooks mentioned throughout the message-board, but I read in Consumer Reports, that Adidas shoes (especially the Adidas Response...unfortunately, I am having as hard time finding it in my size!!) are very good handling shock, stability and flex (July '98). I am also trying arch supports. If you have any opinions/experiences with them, I would like to take them into consideration. Also, you mentioned that you had PF for 6 years and 6 months bad. Were the first six months the worst? Or is the 6 months a cumulative total of your worst experiences with PF?

Again, thank you very much for your help. I really appreciate as much information as possible.

Mark


Re: Oh Sh*t

Mark on 3/29/99 at 00:00 (005845)

BarbJ,

Thank you for your help. You are the second person to recommend swimming, and I thank you for your recommendation. It looks like I will have to start hitting the pool for my workouts.

I do have a question for you concerning recumbent bikes: I noticed that numerous people on the message board mention the recumant bike. How is this an advantage to riding a normal bicycle? I am asking, because I enjoy mountain biking (not REAL mountain biking...I live in the plains) or at the very least, biking around the city, and I would like to continue riding on trails if possible. Your input would be of great value to me.

Thank you.

Mark


Re: Oh Sh*t

Dawn Stosch on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005853)

Mark,
My doc strongly recomended Asics Gel 140's. I have been wearing Adididas, and he still said Scigs--I am heading out today to get some!

Good luck--I think you and I are in the same boat--I just found otu yesterday!

tootles.


Re: Oh Sh*t

Fred on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005854)

Mark,
Don't get discouraged!! When I first started reading the messages on this board I got really depressed because it sounded like people had been suffering with p.f. for years. Some do, but most get better and don't have a reason to come back to this site. I was diagnosed in Jan., got custom orthotics and night splints and will probably be able to start running again in a couple of weeks. I would say the most important thing is NOT to put a definite timeframe on getting better, because if you're not better by then you'll just get discouraged. Rather, try to look at the long-term and try some of the things mentioned on this site until you start feeling better. Good luck!

Re: Oh Sh*t

BarbJ on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005859)

Mark--I prefer the recumbent stationary bike because the seat is like sitting in a chair with good back support. I can also some some light hand weights at the same time and really work up a sweat. I have not found an upright stationary bike that is comfortable for me and have read here that some people actually have heel pain riding the upright but not with the recumbent. I do, however, also ride a 'road' bike and love getting out on that on nice weekends which has not been much this winter given all the rain (especially on the weekends!). I live in hilly Oakland, CA and actually drive to the beach to get some 'flat' terrain for my beginner technique and stamina. Best, BarbJ

Re: Oh Sh*t

Hank on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005860)

Mark,
I'm a triathlete and came down with PF last September when playing
in a ultimate frisbee league. I'm 42 years old. Needless to say,
PF has wreaked havoc on the offseason training schedule. I've seen
improvement over the last few weeks after doing a little experimentation. I had substituted spinning classes for running but
that was a bad idea. I'm not sure what a recumbent bike is but I
would not advise spinning. The heavy resistance causes too much pf
strain. Now that the weather has warmed I'll be biking outside instead. I also mountain bike and have not had additional pf
problems from hitting the trails. I agree with the other folks that
swimming is an excellent way to get cardiovascular exercise w/o
worsening the pf.
best regards and good luck, Hank

Re: Oh Sh*t

ken on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005863)

I ride my bike all over ever since I have not been able to run or walk for any distance.My P.T. advised not to use toe clips but that the cages would be all right.It doesn't seem to aggravate my condition when I ride a good distance or even push it up the hills. At least it is some exercise that I can still do. Good luck.

Re: Oh Sh*t

elizabeth on 3/31/99 at 00:00 (005909)

I'm also a triathlete and I've had PF for about 2+ yrs now. It's not fun but I think I might have learned a few things recently that might be contributing to the problem. Since the end of last season, I haven't been running at all but I've continued biking, swimming, and weights. It looks like biking has been aggrevating to some degree. The steep seat post angle of tri-bikes puts more stress on the calves than a road bike does. Also, a lot of triathletes (like myself) tend to keep their heels up throughout the entire pedal stroke which doesn't allow the calf to extend and stretch out during the down stroke. Seat height can also be a factor...I raised mine a bit and have had some good results so far. Just some things to think about. I think the real key to getting over this is aggressive therapy including: orthotics, deep tissue work on feet AND calves, LOTS of stretching (PF and calves). The combination is doing wonders for me so far but I think i'm going to switch back to a road bike to see if that will prevent my calves from being so tight. Good luck.

Re: Oh Sh*t

hank on 4/01/99 at 00:00 (005925)

Elizabeth,
Will you compete this season? I've started running again (albeit
very slowly and infrequently). The PF isn't too bad in the morning
but can ache at night. I'm currently wearing the splint. I also
started taking Yoga to help with my extremely poor flexibility (it's
a male thing). Since I need work on my swimming mechanics anyway
the PF at least has provided more opportunity for that. Last weekend
I attented the Total Immersion Freestyle workshop in Va. Drop me
an email if you wish and let me know how you sustained the PF and
what you've tried for recovery. Thanks for the post...
best regards, Hank

Re: Oh Sh*t

BarbJ on 3/29/99 at 00:00 (005828)

Mark--I have had pf for over 2 years and as for alternative exercise I have started swimming lately on the recommendation of some folks here and also a long time recommendation of my m.d. I have been pleasantly surprised at how good it makes me feel and even seems to have helped my pf (at least it has gotten somewhat better lately--I think). Before this (and I still do it a couple of times a week) I rode for 30 minutes on my stationary recumbent bike about 4 times a week. I would really like to start a weight lifting program but will need some guidance for this. I think as long as I can lift from a sitting or lying position it would be good for my bones (especially in the prevention of osteoporosis for this 'over 50' woman). Good luck to you in overcoming this.

Re: Oh Sh*t

Alicia on 3/29/99 at 00:00 (005841)

Mark: I also ride a recumbent stationary bike and would recommend swimming if you like water. There is no way to tell how quickly you might get over the PF. You can read messages from one extreme to the other. Read Scott's home page - he gives a good overview of all the alternative treatments. Read what everyone says and try everything until you find something that helps. That's all I can say - if you have a sympathetic MD, it might help, but YOU will probably figure it out before a doc does. I've had it for 6 years, bad for 6 months. What is helping me is stretching, icing, custom orthotics, cross training shoes ONLY and 3-4000mg of vitamin C daily. Good luck.

Re: Oh Sh*t

Mark on 3/29/99 at 00:00 (005844)

Alicia,

You mentioned that you you wear cross training shoes; which particular brand? I have seen New Balance and Brooks mentioned throughout the message-board, but I read in Consumer Reports, that Adidas shoes (especially the Adidas Response...unfortunately, I am having as hard time finding it in my size!!) are very good handling shock, stability and flex (July '98). I am also trying arch supports. If you have any opinions/experiences with them, I would like to take them into consideration. Also, you mentioned that you had PF for 6 years and 6 months bad. Were the first six months the worst? Or is the 6 months a cumulative total of your worst experiences with PF?

Again, thank you very much for your help. I really appreciate as much information as possible.

Mark


Re: Oh Sh*t

Mark on 3/29/99 at 00:00 (005845)

BarbJ,

Thank you for your help. You are the second person to recommend swimming, and I thank you for your recommendation. It looks like I will have to start hitting the pool for my workouts.

I do have a question for you concerning recumbent bikes: I noticed that numerous people on the message board mention the recumant bike. How is this an advantage to riding a normal bicycle? I am asking, because I enjoy mountain biking (not REAL mountain biking...I live in the plains) or at the very least, biking around the city, and I would like to continue riding on trails if possible. Your input would be of great value to me.

Thank you.

Mark


Re: Oh Sh*t

Dawn Stosch on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005853)

Mark,
My doc strongly recomended Asics Gel 140's. I have been wearing Adididas, and he still said Scigs--I am heading out today to get some!

Good luck--I think you and I are in the same boat--I just found otu yesterday!

tootles.


Re: Oh Sh*t

Fred on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005854)

Mark,
Don't get discouraged!! When I first started reading the messages on this board I got really depressed because it sounded like people had been suffering with p.f. for years. Some do, but most get better and don't have a reason to come back to this site. I was diagnosed in Jan., got custom orthotics and night splints and will probably be able to start running again in a couple of weeks. I would say the most important thing is NOT to put a definite timeframe on getting better, because if you're not better by then you'll just get discouraged. Rather, try to look at the long-term and try some of the things mentioned on this site until you start feeling better. Good luck!

Re: Oh Sh*t

BarbJ on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005859)

Mark--I prefer the recumbent stationary bike because the seat is like sitting in a chair with good back support. I can also some some light hand weights at the same time and really work up a sweat. I have not found an upright stationary bike that is comfortable for me and have read here that some people actually have heel pain riding the upright but not with the recumbent. I do, however, also ride a 'road' bike and love getting out on that on nice weekends which has not been much this winter given all the rain (especially on the weekends!). I live in hilly Oakland, CA and actually drive to the beach to get some 'flat' terrain for my beginner technique and stamina. Best, BarbJ

Re: Oh Sh*t

Hank on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005860)

Mark,
I'm a triathlete and came down with PF last September when playing
in a ultimate frisbee league. I'm 42 years old. Needless to say,
PF has wreaked havoc on the offseason training schedule. I've seen
improvement over the last few weeks after doing a little experimentation. I had substituted spinning classes for running but
that was a bad idea. I'm not sure what a recumbent bike is but I
would not advise spinning. The heavy resistance causes too much pf
strain. Now that the weather has warmed I'll be biking outside instead. I also mountain bike and have not had additional pf
problems from hitting the trails. I agree with the other folks that
swimming is an excellent way to get cardiovascular exercise w/o
worsening the pf.
best regards and good luck, Hank

Re: Oh Sh*t

ken on 3/30/99 at 00:00 (005863)

I ride my bike all over ever since I have not been able to run or walk for any distance.My P.T. advised not to use toe clips but that the cages would be all right.It doesn't seem to aggravate my condition when I ride a good distance or even push it up the hills. At least it is some exercise that I can still do. Good luck.

Re: Oh Sh*t

elizabeth on 3/31/99 at 00:00 (005909)

I'm also a triathlete and I've had PF for about 2+ yrs now. It's not fun but I think I might have learned a few things recently that might be contributing to the problem. Since the end of last season, I haven't been running at all but I've continued biking, swimming, and weights. It looks like biking has been aggrevating to some degree. The steep seat post angle of tri-bikes puts more stress on the calves than a road bike does. Also, a lot of triathletes (like myself) tend to keep their heels up throughout the entire pedal stroke which doesn't allow the calf to extend and stretch out during the down stroke. Seat height can also be a factor...I raised mine a bit and have had some good results so far. Just some things to think about. I think the real key to getting over this is aggressive therapy including: orthotics, deep tissue work on feet AND calves, LOTS of stretching (PF and calves). The combination is doing wonders for me so far but I think i'm going to switch back to a road bike to see if that will prevent my calves from being so tight. Good luck.

Re: Oh Sh*t

hank on 4/01/99 at 00:00 (005925)

Elizabeth,
Will you compete this season? I've started running again (albeit
very slowly and infrequently). The PF isn't too bad in the morning
but can ache at night. I'm currently wearing the splint. I also
started taking Yoga to help with my extremely poor flexibility (it's
a male thing). Since I need work on my swimming mechanics anyway
the PF at least has provided more opportunity for that. Last weekend
I attented the Total Immersion Freestyle workshop in Va. Drop me
an email if you wish and let me know how you sustained the PF and
what you've tried for recovery. Thanks for the post...
best regards, Hank