1. Our TMS drop-in chat is today (Saturday) from 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM Eastern U.S.(New York). It's a great way to get quick and interactive peer support. BruceMC is today's host. Click here for more info or just look for the red flag on the menu bar at 3pm Eastern - ***NOTE*** now on U.S. Daylight Time.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
    Dismiss Notice

Making it to the Boston Marathon 2014

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by JoyceVT, Apr 15, 2013.

  1. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

    Hello Friends,

    I haven't posted in while but want to become more active in sharing my TMS struggles as a serious runner. I had to give up the Boston marathon a second time in a row due to TMS plaguing different parts of my legs. Today is April 15, 2013 and it is also marathon Monday. Today is a hard day for me as I have friends who are running the Boston marathon and I am left behind still struggling on a daily basis with my TMS.

    I did have a very successful fall marathon back in November running the Philadelphia Marathon (3:09:09) which will quailify me for Boston 2014. I had some trials with TMS at the end of the training but got through everything successfully. Monte Hueftle was a big help and I had a couple consultations with him. But then I tore a tendon in my foot (from the marathon) and had to take a couple weeks off. My foot healed fine but then my shin splints came back. I tried battling them with ice baths and Ibuprofen (erroneously thinking physical) all of January 2013. And then I also came down with "IT band syndrome" which plagued the bursae on my right lateral side of knee. This was the blow that kept me from training for Boston this year. I only ran 26 miles in the month of February. By March I was starting up very slowly again constantly worrying about my IT band and doing all the wrong things thinking it was a real physical injury from building up my mileage too fast in January. Then I read a testimony from Dr Sopher about a patient overcoming ITBS after she learned about TMS. That was very helpful in getting rid of my TMS in the that same area and trusting it was indeed TMS. I also had another phone consultation with Monte in March which is always helpful.

    Now it's April and I have offically started training for a fall marathon going back to the beginnings with low mileage which will build up slowly. This fall marathon will then prepare me for Boston next April.

    After a couple weeks of successful training (only 22 & 23 miles per week right now) my TMS moved to my right bottom calf (more on the tendon) yesterday while doing my longest run of the week which right now is only 7 miles. I was very distraught and frustrated but knew it was just TMS rearing its ugly head. Today it feels better after accepting that this is just more TMS. Monte says that if you are a TMSer than 99.99% of these aches and pains are going to be TMS.

    One thing to note is that I've had a very few hard months (Nov-Feb) which most likely was the trigger for all my TMS symptoms. I have also hated my job very much. The good news is that I start a new job in 3 weeks which should be a much better situation for me. I'm also focussed on finding more happiness in my life.

    What I'd like to do is post on a regular basis on how I am getting through my TMS and training. It is my quest to make it to the Boston Marahton a year from today! I am going to win the battle with TMS. I'm hoping this might help other athletes or anyone who wishes to become active in any sport and/or pursue a passion such as completing a marathon, triathlon, hiking a mountain, etc. TMS doesn't have to rule us but it's easier said than done. Let this thread help you as it will definitely help me. Please post and feel free to give any feedback or advice.

    Best wishes,

    Here is my story I posted on this forum:

    IT Band Syndrome post:

    Other TMS posts of mine:


  2. CMA

    CMA Peer Supporter

    You Go Joyce...Its fantastic that you have made a goal and are pursuing it. Good luck to you. I have to do a 5K this year, my first one so will see. Thank you for posting your goal and your thoughts.
    eric watson and Anna1 like this.
  3. Forest

    Forest Beloved Grand Eagle

    Joyce - You are truly an inspiration to us all! It is great to see how determined you are to do this, and how you are letting it keep you down. Monte is right about 99.9% of these conditions are TMS. One of the most helpful things I realized is that I am going to have various symptoms pop up overtime, especially when I am stressed out, but if I understand that they are most likely just TMS, I can keep moving without really worrying about them. This too will pass, and you will reach your goal.
    eric watson and Anna1 like this.
  4. gailnyc

    gailnyc Well known member

    Joyce, as a runner myself, I salute you in your determination. I plan on following your posts to see how you're doing, and to be inspired.
    eric watson likes this.
  5. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

    Thank you CMA, Forest and gailnyc for posting and your support! It means a lot to me.

    CMA - I think it's great you going to run a 5K! Please keep us posted on how your training goes.

    My biggest challenge today is to stop testing and thinking about my calf even though I know it's TMS and feeling better than yesterday. It's so tempting to test it and see how it feels which only feeds into the TMS. Luckily Mondays are my rest day from running and I can focus on core and strength work later after work.
  6. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

    Today is another hard day thinking about the tragedy at the Boston Marathon. It is very scary and sad thinking it could have been my husband near the finish line yesterday. My heart goes out to everyone affected by yesterday's senseless violence.

    Trying to be mindful about how yesterday will affect my TMS.
    Anna1 and JanAtheCPA like this.
  7. Forest

    Forest Beloved Grand Eagle

    I still can't believe that it happened. I feel lucky that I stayed home yesterday and didn't go to it. It is heartbreaking to see what usually is such a joyous and wonderful Boston day turn into something so horrific.

    Condolences to anyone who was affected by yesterday's events.
  8. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

    So glad you were home safe Forest! I am still in shock and disbelief....

    Today I did my tempo run at lunch. Nothing crazy as it's the first offical month of training after my TMS flare ups. Everything was great! Was so happy that my shin, IT band and calf felt totally fine running. Grateful to be running and feeling healthy today!
    Anna1 likes this.
  9. RN64

    RN64 New Member

    Good luck Joyce! I am a runner too and used to be pretty serious about racing. In my experience, actual running injuries (like sprains) cause obvious swelling and heal quite quickly with ice and compression. I used to assume that anything else was TMS :)
  10. Enrique

    Enrique Well known member


    I'm also a runner and TMSer. I haven't read through all of your post, but I'd like to... and I will soon. Us TMS / runner types need to stick together :). Last year was actually an interesting year for me. It was one of the most stressful ones for me from a work perspective and it's also one where I suffered the most injuries also. I don't think that's a coincidence. I look forward to a dialogue on the forum about overcoming the TMS symptoms and getting back on the road!

  11. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

    Hi RN64 -thanks for your post. I hope you are still running?

    Hi Enrique - I'm so glad you posted! Your story about overcoming your achillies TMS was truly inspiring for me. I discovered your posts last June when I was having some knee TMS. It was in the beginning of my training for the Philly marathon. I must say it really helped me believe my issues were also TMS. It's so hard when you are a serious athlete to truly believe 100% that it is TMS and not a real running injury. And that is why I relate and respond well to Monte Hueftle and Dr Sopher who have been serious marathon runners and athletes. So coming across your story was a true blessing. Thank you Enrique! I always hoped I'd get a chance to thank you for helping me last year.

    Enrique - are you running/biking right now? Do you have any upcoming races/triathons? I totally understand about stress and how it relates to TMS and training. Late fall and early winter were very difficult for me. I had something awful happen in my life that turned things upside down and on top of that I was hating my job. Now that my life is slowly healing and I start a new job in May, I'm getting a handle on my TMS once again. I can run right now and my legs are finally feeling good without TMS symptoms. But my shoulder TMS is bothering me the last few days. I know it will go away as it always does. Keep me posted on how your training is going. It's wonderful to have support from other athletes/runners.


    PS - the one blessing of all my TMS stuff is that I am learning to love swimming (took it up when I couldn't run due to injuries). And being a serious cyclist back in my 20s I'm thinking triathlons will someday soon be in my future. I just have to put it all together :)
  12. Enrique

    Enrique Well known member

    I'm glad my posts helped you. It's always nice to hear that!

    I'm running right now, but not biking. I was going through some knee pain late last year which I believe may have been a real overuse injury initially, but I believe is now more a TMS symptom. It's been too long for it be a real injury. So I am going to start riding again, especially now that the weather is getting nicer in California. I took a break from swimming after I did a really, really hard session and tweaked my shoulder. I believe that was a real injury as I felt it when it happened. It's just about healed up now though so I look forward to some triathlons this summer.

    The last 6 months have been really, really stressful at work and frankly I've been getting all kinds of TMS symptoms. It's just about as stressful, if not more, as when I first got my RSI which lead me to discover TMS. It would take hours for me to post about everything that's happened, but bottom line is that I'm still here, still running, still typing (I'm an ex-RSI victim) away. I'm able to get through the hard times, feel some pain, and get over it. However, I kind of wish I'd used the support here a bit more during that time, but better late than never. I can relate to what you went through with the "hating your job" situation. I'm close to that myself.

    I don't have any races targeted for this year yet. So I'm not following any plan. I'm just run when I feel like it, stretch, foam roll, do a little resistance work... that's about it right now.

    How about you? Are you targeting anything races?
  13. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

    Enrique - so glad you are running right now. I can relate with knee pain from cycling. I used to race on the USCF circut over 15 years ago and had knee injuries which ended my racing career even after having my knees scoped twice. I didn't know about TMS back then but wonder if it could have been TMS. My husband thinks it was TMS.

    It was an RSI issue that initally led me to finding Dr Sarno and his book, the Mind Body Connection. When I couldn't race my bike I turned to playing my flute. I thought I was coming down with carpal tunnel syndrome as it was also starting to get very painful playing my music and also using my mouse at work. I met with Dr Sopher in his NH office and this got me back to playing my music and using my mouse without the fear and pain. The pain melted away pretty quickly. I could probably write a book about all my TMS episodes with running which I got into later in my 30s. I later figured out that most of the running "injuries" were indeed TMS and that got me to my first half marathon in 2009. That was when I discovered Monte Hueftle, the TMS marathon guru (who's a super nice awesome guy)

    I do think one of the keys to staying on top of TMS is finding happiness and peace in our lives. My current job which is almost done left me very stressful and filled with anger and resentment which is very toxic. I'm really hoping my new job will be a huge improvement. I hope you can find a way to alleviate the stress in your job or find something that is much less harmful. It's hard, I know. We live in Vermont where there are not a lot of job opportunities. Luckily I work for a larger company here that has opportunities if a current job doesn't work out. I'm grateful for that.

    I am signed up for the Baystate Marathon in Lowell, MA which is about 20 minutes north of Boston. I may sign up for a half marathon in Quebec City as I find half marathons great prep for a full marathon. Plus they are so fun! My new running coach wants me to do a few 5 or 10Ks this summer to get faster leg speed.

    Do you journal or meditate? I try to journal a few times a week but need to step it up. I may sign up for a Running/meditation weekend this June to help clear my mind which utimately might help me with my TMS.
  14. RN64

    RN64 New Member

    Hey Joyce,

    I am still running - I'd never give that up :) I stopped racing a few years back, though - I realized that I was getting way too anxious about mileage and optimal training and race times, and as a result, running had stopped being fun.

    It's funny, I too discovered swimming when I was "injured" and thought I couldn't run. I'm intimidated by open water swimming, though, so I've never done a triathlon.

    I went for a 5 mile run yesterday, and it felt great. I'm having a TMS relapse right now, mainly with neck/shoulder pain, and the most excruciatingly painful thing right now is wearing any kind of restrictive clothing in that area, particularly a sports bra. But once I got into my run, I stopped noticing as much - yay:)
  15. Enrique

    Enrique Well known member

    Joyce - Monte also helped me back in '09 after I ran my first marathon. He got me through some shin pain. Finding hapiness... as you said.. really is a key. I've been trying to get to a point where I am happy with my current job. It's been a struggle since I have a boss who can be difficult to please. I may have finally reached a turning point because I've made a decision to just let things be as they are and if it's not good enough for her, then so be it. I already feel less stress because of that.

    I do journal, but have gotten a little lazy in that department in the last couple of months. I don't actively mediate. You mention signing up for running/meditation... can I ask what exactly you mean by that?

    RN64 ---- I was once intimidated by open water swims (OWS), too. I barely learned how to freestyle swim in 2010. My first triathlon (in 2010) had a very short 400 yard swim in it. It felt like it was 1 mile! But I really got a thrill from completing that event. I liked it so much that I kept trying to do little more and more, eventually doing a 2.4 mile swim in an Ironman event. (The swim was the easy part :) )
  16. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

    Wow sorry it's taken a while to post this week. I have one more week left in my current job so it's been a little hectic tying up loose ends. Next week will be busy too but I'll try to check in more...

    RN64 - I'm so glad you're still running and had a good run the other day. If I sleep wrong I sometimes get bad neck and upper shoulder pain. I wonder if that's TMS. Hope yours is feeling better. Running cures a lot of things :)

    Enrique - I think that's a great way to deal with your working situation. Just let it be. You are doing your best and that's all that you can ask of yourself. Your boss sounds like an unhappy individual.

    Running with the Mind of Meditation is the workshop I mentioned. It's about learning to meditate and incorporating meditation into your running. Here's more information. It takes place in June http://www.karmecholing.org/program.php?id=4949

    The workshop is based on the book "Running with the Mind of Meditation" by Sakyong Mipham a Buddist spiritual leader who's marathon PR is a 3:05! It'a nice book I need to read again!

    So this week was busy and lots of irritating situations at work. But my TMS is still under control. Been running well and following my training program without problems. A few small twinges here and there in different places on my legs but never the same thing two days in a row. I think my TMS is just probing around a little. My upper arm/shoulder is still sore and I do think it's another manifestation of TMS. I can swim if I keep my arms close to my body when doing freestyle. And I can still do most of my upper body strength exercises. I can't do push ups and that's a bummer as I want to build up slowly. Those are supposed to make runners strong!! :)

    Well, Happy Friday! Best wishes to everyone for a pain-free weekend.

  17. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

    Legs have been doing well with training after running and cycling this weekend. Still struggling with my upper arm/shoulder TMS. Because it doesn't affect my running I'm not as vigilent about dealing with it the way I would if it was happening in my legs. I keep focussing on the physical even when I know I'm not supposed to. I keep testing to see if it's feeling better. On week 3 and feeling frustrated. But part of me is glad the TMS is targetting my upper body and not my legs!
  18. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

  19. Enrique

    Enrique Well known member

    Hi, I am interested in that running/meditation link you posted. I'll check it out. I ran a 10K on Saturday and my knee started hurting on Sunday and is still a little painful today. I believe it *could* be TMS, but I'm not fully convinced.
  20. JoyceVT

    JoyceVT Well known member

    Hi Enrique - so sorry to hear about your knee. It's really tough trying to decide whether it's TMS or not after doing a race or hard run. I'm trying to think of what Monte would say (I've spoken to him on the phone several times). He says that 99.9% of the time if you are a TMSer it's going to be TMS. What part of the knee? I only ask because I know the spots that are TMS for me.

    That's great you are interested in the running/meditation! I started re-reading the book again and will probably sign up for the workshop in June.

    My own TMS update: Upper Arm and shoulder are still a little sore but finally seeing good improvement over last week. I have been working harder to just dismiss it as TMS. Legs have been good too for the most part. I have had twingy sensations here and there on some runs in the shin/lower inside of leg area but it could just be phantom stuff from my old shin splints or possiblly TMS just poking around. I'm trying to not think "phyisical". It's hard but I need to stop worrying about my shin splint coming back.

Share This Page