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Shin splints! Yeah I know.

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Shin splints! Yeah I know.

Old 12-13-21, 10:53 AM
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Ben Finesilver
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Shin splints! Yeah I know.

So, Ive been training hard recently. I did a 201km ride on Sunday. Today (Monday) I did 26kms that comprised of 20second sprints and torque sprints (stationary start to peak power in biggest gear). I did these applying initial torque with my left leg.

I finished my Monday morning training and then jogged 2km to a local market. SHIN SPLINTS (my left leg)!!!!
I guess I weakened it with the torque sprints and the jog caused the injury.
I hopped on the bike later for 65kms and it wasnt particularly painful.

Question isI have a reat day tomorrow and a race on Wednesday evening. Im not sure if this is going to aggrevate it.
Riding in Z2 seems fine and I did a few short intervals in that ride at 120% FTP. Seemed OK.

I could just go into a recovery week, but Im only 2 weeks into my block.

Should Ia) Stop now and take a recovery week (5days)
b) Finish my block in another week and race on Wednesday?

Would appreciate opinions. Thanks in advance.
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Old 12-13-21, 11:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Ben Finesilver View Post
So, Ive been training hard recently. I did a 201km ride on Sunday. Today (Monday) I did 26kms that comprised of 20second sprints and torque sprints (stationary start to peak power in biggest gear). I did these applying initial torque with my left leg.

I finished my Monday morning training and then jogged 2km to a local market. SHIN SPLINTS (my left leg)!!!!
I guess I weakened it with the torque sprints and the jog caused the injury.
I hopped on the bike later for 65kms and it wasnt particularly painful.

Question isI have a reat day tomorrow and a race on Wednesday evening. Im not sure if this is going to aggrevate it.
Riding in Z2 seems fine and I did a few short intervals in that ride at 120% FTP. Seemed OK.

I could just go into a recovery week, but Im only 2 weeks into my block.

Should Ia) Stop now and take a recovery week (5days)
b) Finish my block in another week and race on Wednesday?

Would appreciate opinions. Thanks in advance.

Don't jog.
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Old 12-13-21, 01:30 PM
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Depends; how bad do you want it to get? If you really work at it, you might be able to make it a chronic injury.

Listen to your body and do what it says.
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Old 12-13-21, 01:38 PM
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To alleviate shin splints walk around on your heels for a little bit. Not too much, just while you're motoring around the house. They'll be gone in a day or two. No shoes, point your toes up as high as you can and walk around.

It works.

No comment on your "training plan"...
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Old 12-13-21, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by livedarklions View Post
Don't jog.
That's probably the best advice. I'm no expert, but I always believed shin splints were caused by the impact of running.

Here's my history with them:

I ran track and cross country in high school. I was not very fast, and I didn’t even have good coaching to teach me how to do it right. But I went on the training runs with my friends almost every day and competed at the meets. After months of this, my shins started to become very sensitive. They were not sore all the time, but I had to be very careful not to bump them into anything, even softly. It affected the front of the shin, where there is not much soft tissue along the tibia, from just above the ankle to just below the knee. The pain/sensitivity lasted for years. I stopped running right after high school, and the pain eventually subsided. In my forties, I started running again. Now I’ve had some other minor problems, but not in my shins.

The funny thing was when I described my running experiences to a friend years ago. I said I ended up with shin splints, which were fairly painful. He asked how long I had them, and I said for many years. He seemed shocked and said some things that revealed he didn’t really understand the term. He thought I was talking about orthopedic splints (like braces) that I had to wear on my legs.

Anyway, I don’t worry too much about this kind of thing when biking.

Last edited by Broctoon; 12-14-21 at 01:04 PM.
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Old 12-13-21, 03:06 PM
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Until last week, I would be in agreement with others, you only get shin splints from running/jogging. At a doctor's appointment last week to work on hip pain, we discovered that I also had shin splints. I don't run, or jog...just ride my bike, and walk my dogs in big clunky boots (it's winter here). I was told that the boots could have caused them....I'm typically as Z2 rider, though the crappy wind can turn my rides into Z3 and Z4.

I was told to be barefoot, and practice picking up a hand towel on a slick floor with my toes to "cure" them. I'm not a very good patient, so haven't been very diligent. Honestly, I have no pain, except when I'm getting man handled by my doctor!
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Old 12-14-21, 12:50 AM
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Jogging 2K is not by itself enough but your power training combined with jogging was enough to put you over. Shin splints are nothing to mess with since recovery can be slow if you continue to aggravate it. I know since I was a possessed runner before becoming a possessed cyclist - who had them 4 times. You need to rest for a week so you can heal. Then start gradually building back up - I know, far more difficult than just writing about it - and for god sakes, stop jogging until you are completely healed and make sure you have proper running shoes.
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Old 12-14-21, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by rsbob View Post
Jogging 2K is not by itself enough but your power training combined with jogging was enough to put you over. Shin splints are nothing to mess with since recovery can be slow if you continue to aggravate it. I know since I was a possessed runner before becoming a possessed cyclist - who had them 4 times. You need to rest for a week so you can heal. Then start gradually building back up - I know, far more difficult than just writing about it - and for god sakes, stop jogging until you are completely healed and make sure you have proper running shoes.

I'm reading this OP and he does a bunch of distance riding before and after experiencing the shin splints without real pain, but he gets in intense pain after a 2k jog. This guy should probably just give up jogging.

I think if he rode 65k after the injury without it being "particularly painful", I doubt it's a case where the riding is injuring him. After all, he felt good enough after his Monday training to do the 2k run.

I don't know if his rest should include not riding, but if he already did a 65k ride with the injury without ill effect, it sure sounds like he answered his own question.
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Old 12-14-21, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Craptacular8 View Post
Until last week, I would be in agreement with others, you only get shin splints from running/jogging. At a doctor's appointment last week to work on hip pain, we discovered that I also had shin splints. I don't run, or jog...just ride my bike, and walk my dogs in big clunky boots (it's winter here). I was told that the boots could have caused them....I'm typically as Z2 rider, though the crappy wind can turn my rides into Z3 and Z4.

I was told to be barefoot, and practice picking up a hand towel on a slick floor with my toes to "cure" them. I'm not a very good patient, so haven't been very diligent. Honestly, I have no pain, except when I'm getting man handled by my doctor!
Interesting. I used to get shin splints regularly when I competed in track, and also when I ran long distance. I later began to run barefoot as a training tool, to correct my stride. Running barefoot forced me to let my body dictate how to run, to protect my feet and legs. I used to heel strike, and land too forcefully. I then began wearing zero drop, minimalist shoes, and have never had shin splints since. That has been a good 20 years.

I still have some conventional running shoes, Saucony, and a pair of Altras, which are zero drop, as well as a pair of Xero shoes. No matter what I wear now, I do not get shin splints. Correcting your stride makes a big difference, as does strengthening your feet, and the leg muscles that help move the foot. Going barefoot goes a long way to strengthening your feet, and the muscles used to support them. Just take it easy while barefoot, and don't overdo it, especially in the beginning.

I will add, that over the pandemic I screwed up my left foot. I was home over the Winter, and had been wearing boots while walking, due to the cold. I usually am traveling in warm climates for work, and can continue to wear minimalist shoes to walk and run. After not being barefoot, and not wearing minimalist shoes for months over the Winter, I wore a pair of minimalist shoes for running over a few days in the Spring, without building up to it. I got a stress fracture, and damaged ligaments and tendon, and developed a lot of issues including plantar fasciitis. In short, I was stupid. I have been dealing with it since May, and still have foot pain, though the plantar fasciitis is gone for the most part, but still have some joint pain. I'm back in my Xero shoes, but take it easy when wearing them. Today I am in my Sauconys.
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Old 12-16-21, 03:58 PM
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Jogging puts 5x as much stress on your legs so no surprise about the shin splints that are the result of overuse. I would stay off the bike for 5 days and avoid jogging as others have recommended. If you want alternative activities take up roller blading or swimming.
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Old 12-16-21, 06:36 PM
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Rest and active recovery/physical therapy for up to a week.

Regarding cycling sprint work, don't pull up on the pedals. If you're certain you aren't pulling up on the pedals and strained your lower legs with downward pressure, be sure your shoes, cleats, etc., are set up appropriately for you.

Regarding jogging, shin splints usually come from bad shoes and poor technique, not just from running as exercise (I'm not talking about maximum effort competitive training). I got shin splints in school and boot camp, but that was from crappy shoes -- flat, poorly fitted sneakers that were too wide for my narrow feet without support for my high arches.

In autumn 2020 I resumed jogging and long walks for the first time in years because chronic neck pain forced me to cut back on cycling (permanent injuries from car wrecks, including worsening stenosis in my cervical vertebrae, per recent CT-scans and MRIs). I started with my Adidas Daily 2.0 flat sneakers, which were fine for cycling with platform pedals and short walks. But within a mile of easy jogging I knew those shoes would cause problems. I switched to Adidas running shoes and immediately felt better. Since then I've added about six pairs of running shoes that fit me properly. No shin splits. Any pain has been soreness from working muscles that haven't been exercised in decades, especially not from cycling which works a very limited muscle group and range of motion.

After a year of jogging 3-7 miles per session, 3-5 times a week, I've had no persistent injuries or pain due to improper form or bad shoes. I follow a training plan and techniques to improve my form, and have sensors in my Under Armor running shoes that work with Map My Run to relay reatime data -- cadence, stride length, foot strike angle, etc. -- to my earbuds to remind me to maintain my form and avoid injury. Works great.

In retrospect the only reason I had running injuries in my youth wasn't from "running." It was from bad shoes and worse coaching -- or *no* coaching. I realized only recent after studying many tutorial videos that my "running coaches" in school were incompetent and had no business coaching high school athletes. Pretty much like my first boxing coaches.

Get proper fit on your bike and with your shoes, good shoes, maintain good form, and you'll avoid injuries cycling or running. I'm 64 now and wish I'd known this decades ago.
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