I have been training for a century, and only 8 days away from the date, I tore a muscle in my calf (playing softball, of all things). Felt like someone hit the back of my calf with a bat. I could barely stumble home. Of course, I am doing RICE, Ibuprofen, etc.
So I assume my century hope is shot.
Has anyone here had experience with this sort of injury? How long before I should try riding? How long did it take to recover?
How do you know that you actually "tore" your muscle? A muscle tear is quite serious.
The doctor told me I "tore" it. However, in the reading I have done, I am hopeful that this injury is on the lower end of severity. The good news is that while it is sore, and certain activities (say, carelessly walking down stairs) are extremely painful, I have no visible bruising after 36 hours.
Of course, all the doctor did was squeeze and ask where it hurt, so who knows.
My wife tore her calf skiing in January. She is just getting back to working out fairly regularly.
It depends on how bad the tear is. If you can move around on it fairly well, it's probably not that bad. If it hurts a bunch or you have fairly limited motion, you need to get in for an evaluation. They'll either do it through physical examination, MRI, or a combination of both.
There's lot of good information on muscle tears online if you spend some time searching.
Basketball and softball are very common causes for Achilles tendon injuries. Expecially after age 40. The medical community generally recommends against surgery unless it's completely detached, because the scar tissue is stronger if it heals by itself. The bad news is, healing sans surgery takes longer - up to several months for a moderately bad tear. Find out from your doc when you can return to normal activity/do rehab, then work to strengthen the tendon/calf. You can find exercises to do by looking on the Internet. On the bike, you may want to lower your saddle a little bit (temporarily,) spin don't mash, and gently stretch the calf often.