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Starting Whole30 for Chronic Tendonitis


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Hi Everyone, 


I'm about to embark on my first Whole30 with the hopes of getting some relief from a case of posterior tibial tendonitis in my left foot that has been plaguing me for almost a year now. I've tried nearly everything - boot immobilization, active release therapy, graston technique, chiropractor, with very little improvement. Moreover, the foot issue has resulted in a strained hamstring, lower back pain, and even shoulder issues... all on the same side of my body as my injured foot. I am convinced I must have some systemic inflammation going on and will do ANYTHING to resolve it.


A bit more about me. The injury came on when I was running about 40 miles/week marathon training. I'm a seasoned endurance athlete - swam in college, race 10ks and half marathons at a competitive level. I've always paid attention to strength work and have interspersed Crossfit and other strength work into my running training. I know the Paleo lifestyle doesn't endorse endurance sports but it is something I do because I truly love it. Its what makes me tick and I can't imagine my life without it.


I've come to terms with the fact that I may never run full marathons at a high level but I am determined to get back into competitive 10k and half marathon shape. I have to believe this is possible. I'm 25 years old, 5'10" and a lean 150lbs. I've gained about 5lbs since this injury and probably lost some muscle mass. I was racing around 143lbs. I think my body is probably happy to have a bit more fat on it but I'll be honest and admit that I do feel a little uncomfortable with my body right now. 


I already eat about 80% paleo, with the exception of breakfast. I am addicted to my morning oatmeal and greek yogurt! This will be the hardest thing to give up. i already cook quite a bit so am looking forward to taking this time to try new recipes and experiment in the kitchen. 


Anyway, I'm hoping to find a little support and encouragement through these forums. My family isn't entirely supportive of me taking this approach. I live with my boyfriend and he has promised to help me and follow (most) of the guidelines as well but I'm not sure he realizes how many of the things he eats now will be off limits. And giving up beer is definitely NOT an option for him :)


I'm spending this week cleaning out the fridge and getting ready to start on Tuesday 3/18 after a long weekend away with family and friends. 


If anyone has any advice regarding the tendonitis or navigating a fridge and pantry that won't be entirely Whole30 friendly I would really appreciate it!


Thanks and glad to be a part of this community!

- Olivia

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Hi Olivia, I am not an athlete by any means, but I also suffered with PTT. When I first had it, I was put in a boot, and that did help, but after time, I was barely able to walk or stand  normally without being in a lot of pain. I went to an orthopedist and did a lot of physical therapy and got these new insoles, and that seemed to do the trick. I also had active release therapy on my shins, that was brutal, but it helped. But I was advised not to do any running (when I first injured it, I had been doing high intensity intervals on the treadmill). I'm also a bit older (56), so my running days are behind me. I am now just happy to be able to go shopping, walking and work in the yard without being in pain.


At that time, I wasn't doing W30. But last year I also injured my elbow (not playing tennis, pruning trees) and I had the pain almost constantly for months. At the time, I was eating clean, but not on W30. In fact, one of the things that attracted me to W30 was that Dallas said it relieved his chronic tendinitis. Since I was already eating pretty clean, and I have AI diseases, I decided to do the AIP W30. That is W30 but also eliminates eggs, ghee and nightshades. Before that, I was having 2 eggs for breakfast each morning. After 5 days without eggs, the pain in my elbow disappeared. It was pretty amazing. And it hasn't returned. I do have eggs once in awhile, but not regularly.


So I do think it can help you, but I would encourage you to try to change your food and for 30 days try to live without the oatmeal. You don't have to have your BF do it with you, my husband doesn't stick to W30, but he is eating better since I am. The thing with W30 is that you don't know what is bothering you until you give it up. And it's not just food. You will want to reduce stress, get enough sleep and not exercise too hard. It's 30 days, if you want to heal yourself, I think it's worth trying. You are only 25 and in a lot of pain. I know you went to a chiro, but have you tried orthotics? I do have one leg shorter than the other and that is probably why I developed this problem. The newer orthotics are very thin and can fit in most shoes. They even make sandals and flip flops with insoles built in.

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Hi oac1/Olivia, I went through a period of time where I had chronic and unrelenting tendonitis in my right wrist from doing so much writing (due to a demanding academic program). By the time the wrist tendonitis was around for 4 months, I was desparate to have it go away. I was wearing a brace, not using my right hand for anything (I was writing exams with my left hand at that point!), taking NSAIDs, and there was still no improvement in the pain. It was suggested to me to remove nightshades from my diet - and I mean ALL nightshades - and the inflammation and pain went away in 3 days (you read that right). I could not believe it!


So, just a thought, try (rigorously) eliminating nightshades from your diet and see what happens...

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