Wednesday, April 22, 2009

C25K - Week 3 Day 2


I started out okay, but then came on the dreaded side stitch! I would go back to walking, think I was fine, start running again and it would come back even worse! So I gave up after like 15 minutes...and I was VERY frustrated with myself! I found this article which has some interesting information in it:

Up until recently there was no clear explanation for the cause of this annoying cramp, also called exercise related transient abdominal pain (ETAP). Now researchers believe that the side stitch is caused by stretching the ligaments that extend from the diaphragm to the internal organs, particularly the liver. The jarring motion of running while breathing in and out stretches these ligaments. Runners tend to exhale every two or four steps. Most people exhale as the left foot hits the ground, but some people exhale when the right foot hits the ground. It is the later group who seem more prone to get side stitches.

Exhaling when the right foot hits the ground causes greater forces on the liver (which is on the right side just below the rib cage). So just as the liver is dropping down the diaphragm raises for the exhalation. It is believed this repeated stretching leads to spasms in the diaphragm.

So I guess I'll try to inhale and exhale when my left foot hits the ground. Oh and it would probably be a good idea for me to drink some water during the day as opposed to just coffee in the morning and a little pop at lunch. I did have some water, but definitely not enough!

I'll be giving this another shot (hopefully) on Friday since tomorrow I have to bowl after work. We shall see how it goes.


Rachel L said...

I get this sometimes too-sooo annoying. One trick that usually works for me is exhaling really hard when the cramp starts- stretches the diaphram.

Andrea said...

Yes good tip Rachel,back a million years ago I tried to take up jogging (lasted about 4 months till I came down with a horrible flu) anyway it is all about the breathing,so that article is most likely correct. Good for you for hanging in there!

mrs.leah.maria said...

Boo to the frustrating run. I've never heard it called ETAP before, but of course there would be a medical term lol.

Definitely drink more water!

jannypie said...

same here! my running coach in high school said it was a lack of oxygen getting to the muscles, so whenever i feel it i made sure to focus on deep breaths every two steps (breathe in for two paces, out for two paces). or, stop running, clasp your hands together and stretch them over your head to the sky. that really gets a good stretch along the side muscles of your belly.

WTG on running at all though!!! keep it up!