Yikes. I read this account of a women’s encounter with Rhabdomyolysis and thought it was definitely worth a post. This serious condition comes from working out way too hard, and can seriously set back your training.
Rhabdomyolysis (or ‘rhabdo’) is a condition resulting from muscle injury. It can be from something like a fall, car accident, or other accident or crushing effect on the muscles. It can also happen to athletes who overexert their muscles to the point that too much muscle breaks down. In any of these cases, the obliteration of lots of muscle too heavily and quickly dumps the broken down material into the blood and can lead to kidney problems, kidney failure, and even death. In most cases, if you get treatment right away, you will be alright. The key is not to get to that point, obviously, but also to listen to your body and know when DOMS is normal and when you’ve gone too far and need medical help.
So we’ve probably all had those workouts where you went a little too hard and really felt it the next day, and the day after, and maybe even 3 or 4 days later. And many of us have had an injury that maybe you didn’t even feel during your workout, but ended up being a painful reminder several days or even weeks later. That sucks, no doubt, but rhabdo goes beyond that.
In this story, the woman talks about a particularly tough workout that she tried very hard to finish, but felt was unnecessarily difficult. The next day, she was immensely swollen and in pain. The swelling was enough to alert her of the problem and cause her to seek medical attention.
Then you learn just how intense the problems were, and what kind of treatment and recovery is required for someone with rhabdo. It’s very no bueno!
She discusses in the article how, in some circles, people talk about rhabdo like it’s a badge of honor. Yikes! Yes, a hard workout can be fun and something you may be proud of, but causing yourself serious injury or developing a serious illness from a workout? That is not cool. Or admirable. Or a sign that you’re a badass. It’s a sign that you’re a masochist and seems like a symptom of a greater issue.
Anyway, check out that story and make sure you’re familiar with the signs of rhabdomyolysis. If there is ever a question as to whether or not your hurt yourself or are ill beyond a reasonable discomfort, seek medical help right away! Your health is no joke, and your body is the only one we’ve got until we get awesome robot bodies. So take care of it!