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  1. #1
    Registered User grubman's Avatar
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    Sore Xiphoid Process?

    Over the last few weeks my ribcage has felt sort of sore at times, like it was being forced to expand. Then, I started getting this slight pain in my lower sternum when I would sneeze, or lately, when doing choice exercises (military press, leg raises, skull crushers).

    At first I didnt think it was a big deal, but I decided to do some research and have now become aware of the Xiphoid Processand Im guessing others on the over 35 forum have as well?

    In any case, I dont think Ive done any serious damage, and since this is new, Im pretty sure I dont have Xiphoidalgia (the syndrome associated with tenderness). Rather, since it is the tie in for so many different muscles, Im guessing Ive strained or pulled something with all my heavy lifting (possibly deadlifts using the trap bar?).

    While it is mentioned that soreness can be caused by strenuous lifting, there isnt any information I could find that directly addressed hardcore weight lifting, recovering from this, and resuming lifting. The sparse information Ive found seems to assume that the strenuous lifting would be a one time thing, not part of a bodybuilding regiment.Im wondering if anyone here has experienced (and healed) this, or if they have more information as it relates to bodybuilding?

    While its disappointing to lay off on the great progress Ive been making, Im figuring Ill take a couple days off, then lift light for a few days and avoid a few exercises. Hopefully after that I can continue with what Ive been doingbut if anyone has more insight Id surely appreciate hearing it.
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    mANTIQUE RustyPipes's Avatar
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    When I was younger I had a long bout with costrochrondritis, which is an inflammation of the cartilage connecting the rib cage to the sternum. It was really painful, and because of it, and a shoulder injury, I abandoned lifting for five or so years. I'm not 100% convinced you have that based on your description, but there's a good thread on here about it that might give you some direction.

    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=111056551

    At its worst it was really painful and mimicked a heart attack, and a lot of lifters get it because of the stress we put on our ribcage during stretching lifts. Mine healed and I don't feel anything now because of it, but it did linger - a long time.
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    Registered User grubman's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by RustyPipes View Post
    When I was younger I had a long bout with costrochrondritis, which is an inflammation of the cartilage connecting the rib cage to the sternum. It was really painful, and because of it, and a shoulder injury, I abandoned lifting for five or so years. I'm not 100% convinced you have that based on your description, but there's a good thread on here about it that might give you some direction.

    http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showth...hp?t=111056551

    At its worst it was really painful and mimicked a heart attack, and a lot of lifters get it because of the stress we put on our ribcage during stretching lifts. Mine healed and I don't feel anything now because of it, but it did linger - a long time.
    Thanks for that link. I checked out costochondritis and I'm pretty sure that isn't the problem. It does sound like a lot of the people on the thread you linked have what I'm experiencing though.
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    Bored drudixon's Avatar
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    Sometimes when I've been doing a lot of dips, a rib will get out of line. Usually, after the initial soreness passes, I can adjust it back with a big breath of air and stretch.
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    Registered User Garage Rat's Avatar
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    Me to^^^.
    Deep bar dips always irritated mine.
    I think there is a point at which your stretching to your limit and past that it's cartilage your pulling on with the rib cage. Cartilage doesn't have to flexibility of muscle and if you hurt it it takes much longer to feel better.
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    Registered User grubman's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Garage Rat View Post
    Me to^^^.
    Deep bar dips always irritated mine.
    I think there is a point at which your stretching to your limit and past that it's cartilage your pulling on with the rib cage. Cartilage doesn't have to flexibility of muscle and if you hurt it it takes much longer to feel better.
    I have only been doing weighted dips for the last 4 months. I haven't felt anything specific while doing them...but that might not mean anything.

    I know when I've been doing deadlifts with the trap bar, there have been a few days I felt something "different" in my chest. A sort of strange tingling (for lack of a better term) actually gave me an odd pumped feeling afterward, which I assumed was good...but now I wonder if this isn't the culprit, since that is a lot of weight pulling down and out.
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    I had issues with my xiphoid process several years ago after a belt testing in Kyokushinkai. I had taken a lot of shots to my torso and it was already feeling tender when, during a rest stop on the drive back, I was stretching and felt it pop. Hurt quite a bit, especially when breathing hard, laughing, or standing up/sitting down.

    Get yourself an elastic rib belt at a pharmacy, same thing people wear for broken ribs. Wear it while it heals, and take some time off. Once it stops hurting, wait an extra week, then start back lifting light.
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    Registered User TouaregV8's Avatar
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    Crazy ironic that you posted this, grub. I just went to see my doctor two weeks ago with this same complaint. Mine started bothering me about 6 months ago. Just mild pain and tenderness and since it bothered me I was frequently pushing on it, probably making it worse because I couldn't leave it alone. When I would lay on my stomach it felt like I was laying on a tennis ball. Like you, I researched online and didn't find much other than the fact that it was probably aggravated from weight lifting and straining. A couple months ago my stomach started giving me problems and I wasn't sure if this was all related or not so I decided to go tell the doc about it. I also took a week off from the gym that same week. My doc did bloodwork (normal), EKG (normal), chest x-ray (normal), and put me on stronger stomach meds. I had been taking Nexium for acid reflux, she switched me to Protonix. I don't know if it was the new stomach meds, time off from the gym, a combination of both, or just a freak coincidence, but the xiphiod process pain I had been having for months is not even noticeable anymore. My doctor eluded to the fact that I may have had gastritis which may have irritated the xiphiod process, but I don't know, 6 months seems like a hell of a long time to have had gastritis...
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  9. #9
    Registered User grubman's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by grouchyjarhead View Post
    Get yourself an elastic rib belt at a pharmacy, same thing people wear for broken ribs. Wear it while it heals.
    I'll certainly check this out at the store.

    Originally Posted by TouaregV8 View Post
    Crazy ironic that you posted this, grub. I just went to see my doctor two weeks ago with this same complaint. Mine started bothering me about 6 months ago. Just mild pain and tenderness and since it bothered me I was frequently pushing on it, probably making it worse because I couldn't leave it alone. When I would lay on my stomach it felt like I was laying on a tennis ball. Like you, I researched online and didn't find much other than the fact that it was probably aggravated from weight lifting and straining. A couple months ago my stomach started giving me problems and I wasn't sure if this was all related or not so I decided to go tell the doc about it. I also took a week off from the gym that same week. My doc did bloodwork (normal), EKG (normal), chest x-ray (normal), and put me on stronger stomach meds. I had been taking Nexium for acid reflux, she switched me to Protonix. I don't know if it was the new stomach meds, time off from the gym, a combination of both, or just a freak coincidence, but the xiphiod process pain I had been having for months is not even noticeable anymore. My doctor eluded to the fact that I may have had gastritis which may have irritated the xiphiod process, but I don't know, 6 months seems like a hell of a long time to have had gastritis...
    Hmmm, sounds the same (although I don't think mine has gotten as "severe" as yours yet). I've started a number of new things in the last 4 months, so it's hard to pinpoint any one thing that may have been the problem. I see that there is a possible relationship between this and digestion. I started an aggressive bulk, so my diet has changed a lot. I also stopped taking acid reflux medicine in favor of changing my diet by avoiding all the wrong foods and taking a probiotic. I also changed to a full body routine which includes a few exercises I hadn't been doing (including the dips and trap bar deadlifts), and have been watching my weights on compound exercises increasing by leaps an bounds, which only motivates me to push harder (responsible, but heavier lifting than I've been doing).

    I only really started noticing it these last couple weeks (the pain when I sneeze is the one that really makes me notice it, and certain exercises the last time I worked out). No insult to doctors, but I'm leery to even bother going to one about this because so many doctors don't seem to have a clue when it comes to things weight lifters do (diet, and lifting) and how they relate to physical problems we have as a result of lifting. Usually an internet search gives me better information that a physician...but not this time.

    How much time did you take off, just the week?
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    Originally Posted by grubman View Post
    No insult to doctors, but I'm leery to even bother going to one about this because so many doctors don't seem to have a clue when it comes to things weight lifters do (diet, and lifting) and how they relate to physical problems we have as a result of lifting. Usually an internet search gives me better information that a physician...but not this time.

    How much time did you take off, just the week?
    I agree with this, which is why I put it off so long. 9 days off from the gym total.
    -Squattin' in the curl rack.
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  11. #11
    dad bod GKC45's Avatar
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    sounds like it sucks
    Just show up. Move some iron. Put in the time. Eat enough food.
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    I think the digestion and diet angle may be worth pursuing. I notice that mine will get tender from time to time and it is almost always when I have let my diet get out of control and always goes away when I tighten things back up.
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    Registered User grubman's Avatar
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    Just an update for anyone who may be searching this out in the future. I took a week off (8 days), with no exercise other than my usual walking for work. Today was my first day back. I was feeling pretty good, so I decided to start right back in with the weights I was doing a week ago. Did my workout today (which was unchanged, and included, among other things, heavy flat benches, military press, weighted wide grip pull-ups, and heavy squats), and it felt great (even though my reps were down a bit). No pain at all.

    Some of my other workouts have been modifies slightly. I'll update if the pain comes back..otherwise assume the week off was the simple cure.
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    Originally Posted by grubman View Post
    Over the last few weeks my ribcage has felt sort of sore at times, like it was being forced to expand. Then, I started getting this slight pain in my lower sternum when I would sneeze, or lately, when doing choice exercises (military press, leg raises, skull crushers).

    At first I didn�t think it was a big deal, but I decided to do some research and have now become aware of the Xiphoid Process�and I�m guessing others on the over 35 forum have as well?

    In any case, I don�t think I�ve done any serious damage, and since this is new, I�m pretty sure I don�t have Xiphoidalgia (the syndrome associated with tenderness). Rather, since it is the tie in for so many different muscles, I�m guessing I�ve strained or pulled something with all my heavy lifting (possibly deadlifts using the trap bar?).

    While it is mentioned that soreness can be caused by strenuous lifting, there isn�t any information I could find that directly addressed hardcore weight lifting, recovering from this, and resuming lifting. The sparse information I�ve found seems to assume that the strenuous lifting would be a one time thing, not part of a bodybuilding regiment.I�m wondering if anyone here has experienced (and healed) this, or if they have more information as it relates to bodybuilding?

    While it�s disappointing to lay off on the great progress I�ve been making, I�m figuring I�ll take a couple days off, then lift light for a few days and avoid a few exercises. Hopefully after that I can continue with what I�ve been doing�but if anyone has more insight I�d surely appreciate hearing it.
    Yes, I developed pain and swelling in the same area, hurts the most when doing behind the neck shoulder presses (reaching back and stretching to remove bar from the rack while seated). Hurts a bit too with incline chest presses. I think I caused it doing the T-Bar row machine for back and leaning my chest against the pad. This, and my left shoulder pain are ruining my workouts, back after 20 years off, started again June 2018, in best shape of my life, and I have Multiple Sclerosis for 25 years, but my lift has not been affected. I guess one of the lucky ones.
    Last edited by Schmed66; 04-26-2019 at 05:29 AM.
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    Originally Posted by TouaregV8 View Post
    Crazy ironic that you posted this, grub. I just went to see my doctor two weeks ago with this same complaint. Mine started bothering me about 6 months ago. Just mild pain and tenderness and since it bothered me I was frequently pushing on it, probably making it worse because I couldn't leave it alone. When I would lay on my stomach it felt like I was laying on a tennis ball. Like you, I researched online and didn't find much other than the fact that it was probably aggravated from weight lifting and straining. A couple months ago my stomach started giving me problems and I wasn't sure if this was all related or not so I decided to go tell the doc about it. I also took a week off from the gym that same week. My doc did bloodwork (normal), EKG (normal), chest x-ray (normal), and put me on stronger stomach meds. I had been taking Nexium for acid reflux, she switched me to Protonix. I don't know if it was the new stomach meds, time off from the gym, a combination of both, or just a freak coincidence, but the xiphiod process pain I had been having for months is not even noticeable anymore. My doctor eluded to the fact that I may have had gastritis which may have irritated the xiphiod process, but I don't know, 6 months seems like a hell of a long time to have had gastritis...
    Maybe Hiatal Hernia ?
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    OLD THREAD BUMP!
    Sounds like https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/costochondritis/ but you need a doctor to diagnose (not an unqualified idiot like me on the internet).
    If it's any consolation the OP (grubman) of this old post is still alive on the forums, so if the condition is fatal it certainly seems to take >4 years to get you

    Grubman, how long did it take for you to get better?
    Faith in Jesus first and faith in squats second.
    Then other details will start to slot themselves into place.
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    Registered User grubman's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by OldFartTom View Post
    OLD THREAD BUMP!
    Sounds like https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/costochondritis/ but you need a doctor to diagnose (not an unqualified idiot like me on the internet).
    If it's any consolation the OP (grubman) of this old post is still alive on the forums, so if the condition is fatal it certainly seems to take >4 years to get you

    Grubman, how long did it take for you to get better?
    I don’t remember, this was 4 years ago. By the sound of the “update” post #13, sounds like a week off and a little time easing back into it and I was fine. Good news is I’ve never experienced it again.
    My 8 year progress video: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=wg3BXudgIjg
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