T Nation

Pain Running and Biking


My fiancee has a pain on her left side when she runs. Sometimes she can get through the pain and other times she cant. She drinks plenty of water as suggested, but the pain still occurs. We believed it may have been a cyst, but her ultrasound showed no signs of anything wrong. She did injure her back a few years back and this may be the cause of the pain.

Any thoughts on what it could be and how to manage it better?


Where abouts on her left side? No doubt you mean her torso, but where abouts? Is it only when she runs- what about during day-to-day activity, and for how long? I'm wondering if it may be her serratus muscle; parts of it (serratus posterior superior and inferior) actually run deep into the back, and can be strained by various means. Perhaps it's even just a strained intercostal? You mention that she had a previous injury- what did that entail?

Could maybe be a strained intercostal muscle


My Fiancee broke/fractured her back several years ago, she was on a see-saw and her friend thought it would be funny to launch her. Ended up not being funny. according to the doctor it was either her L3/L4 or L4/L5 that got fractured. Hard to tell because she was told one thing, but the paperwork says different(she had no health insurance at the time so they took very little care of her).

She describes the location of the pain as being lower left abdomen just to the right of her hip. The pain is intermittent and is hard to say when it stops/starts.


It may be the lungs and diaphragm I used to get them when my conditioning wasn't as good, it felt sharp I was scared I had a bruised rib or kidney problem, one hypothesis I heard was that its a borderline lung cramp. Interval training should help some, also breathing exercises, then combining running for a while with lung stretching exercises where you push the cardio for 2 minutes or whatever is well below the time it takes to get the pain. Then you take real deep breaths but try to keep it to the lungs visualize expanding them. Hold for a few seconds then release. Take a few breaths then run again. Try to build to longer cardio intervals and less breathing stops.

Or just be patient as the conditioning builds.


As an extra FYI - the pain has been around for at least 6 months to over a year.


She can run for 20 minutes without having to stop for air/water. The pain is the only thing that bothers her, but she pushes through it as long as she can. Her conditioning is better than mine so not sure if that could be it.


It could possibly be a tight psoas muscle causing pain and spasms. It's a very difficult muscle to try and loosen up by yourself. Her best bet would be to get some deep tissue massage done on the psoas. It's definately worth a shot as it's a muscle that tends to be tight with most people, let alone someone who fractured their back.