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Strange, New Inner Thigh/Groin Injury

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Strange, New Inner Thigh/Groin Injury

Old 05-29-20, 01:14 PM
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Strange, New Inner Thigh/Groin Injury

Howdy y'all,

I've just finished rebuilding a MTB frame I had laying around for several years about 2 weeks ago and started riding again after a very long time off. I'm also what seems to be considered here a "Clydesdale" at 260 lbs.

I averaged 11 km/ day (all road) for several days and managed a glorious (for me anyway - it's been a while) 30 km ride last Sunday. I followed the 30 km ride with another 11 km ride the next day followed by an 8 km ride the day after that. I felt a bit of saddle soreness and decided to take a day off. Feeling fine, I did another 11.5 km ride. However, during that ride, I couldn't help but feel that my saddle was too low and that I was constantly having to shift myself backwards on the saddle every so often. I also felt I wasn't as efficient as I could be. So, I raised the saddle by about an 1.5 inches and moved it forward so that it now sits with the seat post almost exactly in the middle. I felt the adjustments did give me a bit more power. So far, so good: I felt no saddle issues or pains or anything else. In fact, I was feeling really darned good. The next day - yesterday - I did another 11.5 km on a slightly bit more hilly route and found myself struggling through most of it. At first, I attributed it to the heat of the day (I usually take my rides in the cooler mornings), but then began to feel real pain and discomfort in the "sit bone" areas and actually had to stop, rest and stretch for a few minutes before completing the last 2 km back home. When I got home, getting off the saddle and walking was difficult. From there on it just got worse: the pain in my "sit bone" area (gluteous maximus) increased. I tried stretching which helped a bit, but when I tried to squat, I found it all but impossible. My butt muscles were screaming! Then the pain moved to my left inner thigh/groin as the night went on and lasted throughout the night until I awoke this morning. Now the pain is almost exclusively in my left inner thigh/groin area and I'm just taking it easy. The pain is ever-so-slooowly decreasing.

Could the raising of my saddle be responsible? And why is it only the left inner thigh/groin muscle is affected. I still have a bend in the knee when fully extending the stroke and it seems I can still draw a straight line through my knee and the ball of the front foot when the crankshaft is parallel to the ground.

I've also had several cervical and lumber spinal surgeries, but I have no back pain associated with that when I ride, so I believe my upper torso positioning is fine. As sensitive as my back is, I would notice anything immediately. As to how I ride, I hardly ever come out of the saddle to climb and simply shift to the gear that keeps the cadence which is averaging about 65 rpm.

Anybody else out there experience the same and/or have any idea what's the cause?
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Old 05-29-20, 01:36 PM
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Originally Posted by jc907 View Post
..................or have any idea what's the cause?
Old age.

Of course you need to decide if it's something more that needs professional attention. I certainly can't do that for you.

At my age, I certainly can't go out and increase my exertion levels without paying for it a few days until my body decides it has to put up with working at this new level. If I give it several months of vacation then return to doing more exertion, then it rebels again.

As for adjusting the seat, a common method is to sit in the seat, put you heel on the pedal at the bottom of it's stroke. If your knee has a slight bend, you are probably good. No bend left to go and you probably need to lower the seat.

Part of your pain is certainly just getting used to the saddle again. I don't ride a lot during the winter and many times when I start back riding frequently, my butt is sore around the sit bones for a couple weeks.

One other issue that might be for your groin pain is using too much muscle to pedal. If pedaling is hard, then you need to shift to a lower gear. Pedaling should be easy. Bicycles are cardio workout. Not so much strength training. So easy gears actually give you more cardio benefit.

However there are lots of things that it could be. Just remember you have to decide if you need medical attention.


P.S. If you look hard when you are in edit mode. You can find a delete post function. If no one has answered your other double-post, the you might want to delete it.

Last edited by Iride01; 05-29-20 at 01:40 PM.
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Old 05-29-20, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
Old age.

Of course you need to decide if it's something more that needs professional attention. I certainly can't do that for you.

At my age, I certainly can't go out and increase my exertion levels without paying for it a few days until my body decides it has to put up with working at this new level. If I give it several months of vacation then return to doing more exertion, then it rebels again.

As for adjusting the seat, a common method is to sit in the seat, put you heel on the pedal at the bottom of it's stroke. If your knee has a slight bend, you are probably good. No bend left to go and you probably need to lower the seat.

Part of your pain is certainly just getting used to the saddle again. I don't ride a lot during the winter and many times when I start back riding frequently, my butt is sore around the sit bones for a couple weeks.

One other issue that might be for your groin pain is using too much muscle to pedal. If pedaling is hard, then you need to shift to a lower gear. Pedaling should be easy. Bicycles are cardio workout. Not so much strength training. So easy gears actually give you more cardio benefit.

However there are lots of things that it could be. Just remember you have to decide if you need medical attention.


P.S. If you look hard when you are in edit mode. You can find a delete post function. If no one has answered your other double-post, the you might want to delete it.
Thanks for the input.
You probably right about it just being old age. I'm certain it's not something requiring more professional attention. Heaven knows I've broken and banged myself up enough over the years to know when it's simply muscular or something more serious. This is painful but just muscular.
I'm believing more and more that it's a combo of the saddle adjustment and just being more ambitious than I should since I wasn't sore in the least for the week + that I started and had the problem a day after I made the adjustment.

My foot position/leg extension is good, but I dropped the saddle down 3/4" anyway and we'll see how that goes. Just to be on the safe side, I'm going to take time off until the issue is gone in case there's an associated ligament or tendon issue. I tore the big tendon in my groin while working out in '97 and remember that it took 6 months to heal completely. I definitely don't want to go through that again!

Thanks again.
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Old 05-29-20, 02:45 PM
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3/4" is a lot, IMO, unless you know it was too far one way or the other". I like to sneak up on it in about 1/4" amounts and try it for several rides or at least 50 miles. Usually for me, I start to feel it in my knees if it's too high. Or if too low, my legs bounce into my gut too much when in the drops.
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Old 05-29-20, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Iride01 View Post
3/4" is a lot, IMO, unless you know it was too far one way or the other". I like to sneak up on it in about 1/4" amounts and try it for several rides or at least 50 miles. Usually for me, I start to feel it in my knees if it's too high. Or if too low, my legs bounce into my gut too much when in the drops.
Well, since I initially raised it 1.5", I thought bringing it back down by a half (3/4") would be reasonable. Even when it was all the way down, I still wasn't anywhere near hitting my not-insubstanstial gut. I just felt my legs weren't being allowed to extend efficiently. That's why I raised it so much in the first place. After raising it I still had a good knee bend at full extension and no hip rocking. But, you're probably right: I probably should drop it back to where it was and try raising it in 1/4" increments.
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Old 05-29-20, 03:13 PM
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Use the heel--on-pedal method to get a first approximation of correct saddle height. There are several methods here: https://www.mantel.com/blog/en/how-t...-saddle-height
Try them all.

It's an injury. It happens. I started lifting weights before I restarted cycling at 50. I still lift weights except for this mess. When you're over 50, you really have to work to prevent sarcopenia. Here's another thing you can do:

Stand on a chair. Pick up one foot and bend the knee on the opposite foot until it just touches the floor, come back up. Work up to a set of 25 with each leg, then repeat to make 2 sets. Don't do this until your current injury heals. If you can't do one, start with doing chair sits:

Standing in front of a chair, sit down to just touch the chair then back up. Again, work up to 2 sets of 25. Then try the one-leggeds.
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Old 05-29-20, 05:47 PM
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After the injuries accumulate and age exacerbates those injuries, it's a continual battle with bike fit. Make adjustments as needed to suit yourself. There are no rules.

Especially with spinal injuries. That affects everything.

One reason I still like my older bikes with quill stems is I can adjust stem height at whim to suit myself. Some days a 1/4" adjustment, up or down, helps. That day. Subject to change at whim.

Same with saddles, height, fore/aft position, even angle.

Ditto pads for shorts/bibs.
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Old 05-29-20, 05:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
Use the heel--on-pedal method to get a first approximation of correct saddle height. There are several methods here: https://www.mantel.com/blog/en/how-t...-saddle-height
Try them all.

It's an injury. It happens. I started lifting weights before I restarted cycling at 50. I still lift weights except for this mess. When you're over 50, you really have to work to prevent sarcopenia. Here's another thing you can do:

Stand on a chair. Pick up one foot and bend the knee on the opposite foot until it just touches the floor, come back up. Work up to a set of 25 with each leg, then repeat to make 2 sets. Don't do this until your current injury heals. If you can't do one, start with doing chair sits:

Standing in front of a chair, sit down to just touch the chair then back up. Again, work up to 2 sets of 25. Then try the one-leggeds.

Thanks much for the info!

Actually, I was taught a variation of the saddle set back in your link to determine both seat height and set back. The difference was the plumb line ran through the center of the knee instead of in front of it and then through the pedal's axle center. But, while it worked for me back then, that was more than 40 years ago and I'm sure the methods shown in your link are more up to date. I'll be sure to try them out.

Your suggested exercises sound like one-legged squats and the first no-chair-sit example uses the chair just for stability as you bend the one knee and lower yourself until your butt just touches the floor, yes?
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Old 05-29-20, 07:23 PM
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Originally Posted by jc907 View Post
Thanks much for the info!

Actually, I was taught a variation of the saddle set back in your link to determine both seat height and set back. The difference was the plumb line ran through the center of the knee instead of in front of it and then through the pedal's axle center. But, while it worked for me back then, that was more than 40 years ago and I'm sure the methods shown in your link are more up to date. I'll be sure to try them out.

Your suggested exercises sound like one-legged squats and the first no-chair-sit example uses the chair just for stability as you bend the one knee and lower yourself until your butt just touches the floor, yes?
You probably meant until your foot just touches the floor? Yes, if you need it. I put the chair near a wall and put 1 or 2 fingers on the wall. I'm sure there are folks who do it just balancing..Yes, they're one-legged squats for wussies like me. I simply can't do pistol squats. My extended leg cramps every time I try it. Back when . . .back when I was on the Nordic XC team in college, I once did a squat-off with a guy on the football team, one-legged squats just balancing, not all the way down, just to parallel. He quit after about 150. I did 200 on my right leg. It helped to be 18. My prize was that I didn't have to clean the bathroom for a week. Those Nordic skiers are FIT.
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Last edited by Carbonfiberboy; 05-29-20 at 08:06 PM.
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Old 05-29-20, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
You probably meant until your foot just touches the floor? Yes, if you need it. I put the chair near a wall and put 1 or 2 fingers on the wall. I'm sure there are folks who do it just balancing..Yes, they're one-legged squats for wussies like me. I simply can't do pistol squats. My extended leg cramps every time I try it. Back when . . .back when I was on the Nordic XC team in college, I once did a squat-off with a guy on the football team, one-legged squats just balancing, not all the way down, just to parallel. He quit after about 150. I did 200 on my right leg. It helped to be 18. My prize was that I didn't have to clean the bathroom for a week. Those Nordic skiers are FIT.
Hah! Sometime after my lower back surgery, I started to feel good enough to run again but it only lasted about 4 months before I went downhill again. However, I found XC skiing was much more lenient on my back because there was very little pounding (unless I fell which thankfully was very rare) and we had excellent, well kept trails near us about 1/2 hour noth of Binghamton, NY that were simply sublime and I did find I could maintain a decent level of cardio with it, but that too became more and more difficult. The risk of falling increased with the difficulty and unfortunately that too had to stop but boy did I enjoy it while it lasted.
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Old 05-29-20, 08:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
You probably meant until your foot just touches the floor? Yes, if you need it. I put the chair near a wall and put 1 or 2 fingers on the wall. I'm sure there are folks who do it just balancing..Yes, they're one-legged squats for wussies like me. I simply can't do pistol squats. My extended leg cramps every time I try it. Back when . . .back when I was on the Nordic XC team in college, I once did a squat-off with a guy on the football team, one-legged squats just balancing, not all the way down, just to parallel. He quit after about 150. I did 200 on my right leg. It helped to be 18. My prize was that I didn't have to clean the bathroom for a week. Those Nordic skiers are FIT.
And yes, "foot" definitely makes much better sense!
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Old 05-29-20, 09:22 PM
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Originally Posted by jc907 View Post
Hah! Sometime after my lower back surgery, I started to feel good enough to run again but it only lasted about 4 months before I went downhill again. However, I found XC skiing was much more lenient on my back because there was very little pounding (unless I fell which thankfully was very rare) and we had excellent, well kept trails near us about 1/2 hour noth of Binghamton, NY that were simply sublime and I did find I could maintain a decent level of cardio with it, but that too became more and more difficult. The risk of falling increased with the difficulty and unfortunately that too had to stop but boy did I enjoy it while it lasted.
What was going on that things got worse instead of better? That's a terrible thing to go through. Although we all will, eventually.
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Old 05-29-20, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
What was going on that things got worse instead of better? That's a terrible thing to go through. Although we all will, eventually.
I had a L5 - S1 discectomy to address a compressed nerve that was causing extreme lower back/sciatic pain and loss of feelings in my legs and butt. It was the result of jumping in and out of trucks day in and day out for 18 months in Iraq. I was often the teams SAW gunner which meant I carried the heaviest loadout (about 100 lbs.) of ammo and weapons (SAW, rifle and about 1500 rounds of ammo). The trucks were older South African armored vehicles that were at least a couple of feet off the deck. Jumping in and out of them at 46 years old apparently didn't agree with my lower spine.
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Old 05-29-20, 09:42 PM
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Originally Posted by jc907 View Post
I had a L5 - S1 discectomy to address a compressed nerve that was causing extreme lower back/sciatic pain and loss of feelings in my legs and butt. It was the result of jumping in and out of trucks day in and day out for 18 months in Iraq. I was often the teams SAW gunner which meant I carried the heaviest loadout (about 100 lbs.) of ammo and weapons (SAW, rifle and about 1500 rounds of ammo). The trucks were older South African armored vehicles that were at least a couple of feet off the deck. Jumping in and out of them at 46 years old apparently didn't agree with my lower spine.
Apparently, the discectomy and fusion doesn't always take well and I'm one of those statistics.
Fortunately, it seems riding a MTB in an upright position has little effect on my condition...so far that is. The road bike is another story.
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Old 05-29-20, 10:40 PM
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That's tough duty. I'm always like - there's gotta be something one can do. You've done the PT, watched the videos, talked to the surgeon, etc? Dead end? How much can you bend your spine? If you go too far, damage? Don't know anything about this one. One suggestion: Riding Position Discovery
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Old 05-29-20, 11:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
That's tough duty. I'm always like - there's gotta be something one can do. You've done the PT, watched the videos, talked to the surgeon, etc? Dead end? How much can you bend your spine? If you go too far, damage? Don't know anything about this one. One suggestion: Riding Position Discovery
Since it's the last lumber disc, the range of motion is not terribly affected. Nonetheless, your body is an amazing thing in that its ability to detect something wrong and try to keep you from making it worse is really remarkable but also has strange effects. For example: walking is not too much of an issue for me but prolonged sitting or standing is. If I'm on my feet more than 15-20 minutes as I can be at church (I'm Orthodox Christian and there are no pews - luckily, they have a couple of chairs for folks like me along the wall, but the transitioning from sitting to standing is also painful), I start losing feeling in my feet and get pains in my butt, foot soles and outside of my thighs; if I'm sitting, I get pains in my lower back after 15-20 minutes. To address this, I've tried getting ryzotomies which are basically spinal injections to chemically terminate the painfully offending nerves. In theory, that sounds like it might work, but your body gets hip to what you're trying to do and reroutes the pain to other nerves because it knows something's not right in that spot and you need to know about it and the way it tells you and keeps you from making it worse is by sending pain signals from the affected area. I've had several of these procedures and just gave up. Eventually, the next disc level starts to go early because it's picking up the extra work load from the removed disc. I think this is starting to happen in my L4-L5 disc. So, I have to be real careful about how I go about things. I also had a double discetomy in my neck at C4, C5 & C6 in '05. That's an issue because I'll have more noticeable loss of range of motion if I get the next levels taken out which I'm due for. Discectomies only last about 7-10 years before the next levels go. As it is now, I still have almost 90% neck mobility, but I'm starting to have issues with loss of feeling in my hands, neck pains and stiffness again because C4, 5 & 6 is the junction where the nerves going to your hands come out of your neck. Keeping a straight back/neck and not lifting my head back helps and I use one of those tiny mirrors attached to my helmet to see behind me without turning my head. This is why MTB riding on the road is easier for me than my road bike which now sits dormant in the garage. It's quite literally a pain-in-the-neck and ass, but the alternative is what exactly? I suppose I could swim but then I have a 20 minute shlep to the pool - if and when it ever opens up again - or get bored out of my mind on the elliptical. Walking doesn't get the heart rate up enough to get any cardio benefit unless I use the treadmill - again...boring. I can't give up trying to find something that works.
Thanks for the link :-)
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Old 05-30-20, 03:52 AM
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I am sympathetic to your difficulties. I had lots of pain while working the visiting room at a local prison. On your feet all day is tiring but the pain. It was Sciatica from my body not used to all we carried on our belts. Our radio we called a "brick". That was not only due to size and weight but it was handy in a dustoff. I solved the problem with a special set of exercises, Chiropractor treatments, and bidding another job away from the visiting room. It all worked together. I wish I could give you advice but it would be worth what you paid me for it. And thanks for your service. Be Well, Bluesfrog.
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