Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Oh the pain!

Since I started running regularly earlier this year, I've picked up a lot of first-hand knowledge. Not all of it is pleasant, however.

This would fall into the unpleasant category.

One side effect I have to endure after most of my runs is pain. It's not chronic pain, such as back or ankle pain. It's not mental pain or any sort of emotional anguish.

Nope. It's my nipples, possibly the most useless part of my body. Really, what purpose do they serve me? Actually, before this unpleasant side effect, I don't think they ever had any sort of feeling or anything. I'd never called them into action per se. They were just there.

And now, they are a lingering side effect of my runs. Typically after a run, my nipples hurt. They're tender and quite raw. On more than a few occasions, they actually have bled. In fact, once I wore a white t-shirt to the gym and did I believe a 42-minute interval run - either that or a 4-mile run. Anyway, when I was done with it, I was about to step off the treadmill when I noticed something on my chest. I hadn't been able to see it during my actual run but after I'd stopped and shifted my body around, I saw a streak of red down the left side of my chest. It looked as if I were lactating blood. I covered up and went straight to the bathroom.

I've done a little research into it. You can get this condition apparently because your shirt repeatedly rubs against the nipple during prolonged running. Makes sense too. If you run for 40 minutes, a shirt could really rub you raw.

Some of the ways to treat it are to run shirtless, wear tape or band-aid or something, and to rub vaseline on it before a run. I don't run shirtless and probably won't anytime soon but I tried the band-aid once. After a run, though, my nipple hurt and when I checked for the band-aid, it was gone. There was absolutely no sign of it anywhere.

My last option is the vaseline. I've not tried it but after my last couple of runs resulted in some lingering pain I decided that I need to do something about it. So far, though, that hasn't resulted in an actual purchase of vaseline or anything of the nature. Hopefully it works. It's not that the pain is intolerable or even long-lasting. It's just an uncomfortable side effect that, if I can avoid, would be good to do so.


Pamela said...

Ouch LB. Well, what can I say. Now you know what it feels like the first week or so of breast feeding a newborn baby! I would defintly try the vaseline. The bandaids are probably sweating right off. You can check for the sport type bandaids...hopefully you're not a hairy chest kind a guy though. If so, I sould prepare yourself for a good sting when you rip those things off. ;)

Pamela said...

He he he...that's "would prepare". :)

5thsister said...

Okay, so picture this. I'm reading your intro. I pause to take a sip of my morning tea. I then read "It's my nipples..." Needless to say I am now cleaning up tea splatter from my laptop screen and all areas within a 5 foot radius. This post should have come with a written warning! Anyway, FYI, this is why I wear a sports bra, Luis!

ChristineM said...

Why am I thinking of "Meet The Parents"??? ;)

Thanks for the chuckle at your expense, LB! Seriously, I'd give the vaseline a try - hubby has chafing problems and it seemed to help him a lot. Good luck!!

thrasherswife said...

Ok, LB, if the vaseline doesn't work, try switching from t-shirts to under armor type shirts (you can get them a lot cheaper at target say then big 5). I have a problem with chaffing under my arms, but I only have this problem when I wear cotton tank tops. I am almost certain this will solve your problem.

L.B. said...

Thanks everyone for your input. Before I go on my next run, I will have gotten my hands on some vaseline. T-shirts are truly nipple-killers as, for me, any run for longer than say three miles in a t-shirt is guaranteed of bringing blood. Thrasher's wife, I got some good workout shirts for my birthday but not the armor type ones that remain really close to your body. I'll have to consider purchasing some armor to protect against this.

Who am I? said...

I can't believe that nobody has referenced The Office!! They did a fun run and someone definitely experienced the same problem. It was hilarious. Not that your pain is hilarious, but it would be worth a visit to You Tube.

Who am I? said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
thamesarino said...

I'm a little late on this one, but just thought that I would add the idea of using Lanisoh... or some other type of Lanolin... as a woman who has been nursing for 3years(3 & 1 yr olds) straight I can attest to the soreness of niples!! Yes lanisoh is made for breatfeeding moms but it is awesome stuff and helps with all sorts of dry, irritated skin issues(hands, elbows...)... it's more healing than the vaseline would be, even if you applied it before the it could help heal and the vaseline could protect it...just a thought... : )
good luck!