Polymyalgia Rheumatica

I suffer from PMR, a condition that causes acute pain mainly in the shoulders, back, and upper legs. It can be effectively controlled by taking a steroid called prednisolone. One can run but there is a tendency to put on weight.
I would be very interested to hear from anyone with this condition and how they may be coping generally and with running. Is prednisolone a banned substance!!


  • er I think not banned but restricted so that one would have to notify one's sports governong body and provide medical evidence for the condition

    hope you get some response from fellow sufferers/runners
  • Thanks Big AL. It's a bit academic at the moment as I hobble through the mornings, 'racing' not being possible. Of course I'm planning a comeback and your comments add to the help I need to achieve this one day. Any other thoughts, perhaps from running medical professionals, would be most welcome.
  • I have been diagnoised with PMR and have started on prednisolone. This has helped the pain in my hips but still suffering with neck and shoulders. I'm not sure if I will beable to still run marathons/ ultras. Does anyone have this and still run distances ?

  • I noticed that all these posts are quite dated now. I was diagnosed with PMR just over a year ago, stopped me running for a month or so then the steroids were like a wonder drug getting my mobility back. Park Runs have been so important getting me back running. Just completed the Great North Run, no great pace but I can jog it (2:27)
  • Hi Mike, I currently awaiting a blood test, but have all the symptoms so likely i have pmr. I have had symptoms for 3 months, but carried on running & did a half & 10k thinking it was just overuse stiffness. It must be physiological, but i have felt worst since i went to the Dr & he told me about PMR! I was very competitive and was winning age group medals in February, & I'm finding not being able to run really hard especially with the prospect of taking steroids & taking years to get my fitness back, so some light at the end of the tunnel would be great to cheer me up - i need to get back up there asap or i will go mad! I would very much like to get to know how your running is going?
  • Hi Paul. Wondering how you are getting on in getting back to running? You're a few months ahead of me, I was diagnosed just over 3 weeks ago. A bit like you my symptoms came on as I was training for the London Marathon, which i ran and all well, this year and I put it down to poor running posture etc until it got so much worse! Steroids now doing a great job thankfully and wondering about doing Couch to 5k etc to get myself back out there. How have you got on?
  • I developed classic PMR symptoms in late March, just after the COVID-19 shutdown started in California. I diagnosed myself in early April but didn't get confirmation from an M.D. and get started on prednisone until late May. Prednisone made the symptoms disappear almost completely and I'm back to running normal distances, but I seem to have lost a lot of leg strength. Everything is about 30 sec/mile slower than it used to be. It doesn't hurt, but I just can't go. Have others had this experience? Is this a result of the PMR, the prednisone, or just the fact that I couldn't run much for about two months? I have no obvious side effects from the prednisone, and while it's supposed to cause weight gain, I have lost about 4 pounds (from 114 to 110) since this started, apparently without changing my diet. I am now at 7 mg/day of prednisone after starting at 10 mg.
  • I was diagnosed with PMR in early 2020. Prednisone quickly relieved the symptoms. I wasn't able to run as I was recovering from rupturing my quadracep so was limited to cycling and weight training. Since then I have returned to running short distances. The danger seems to be osteoporosis and the risk of a fall
  • Thank you to everyone who has contributed to this thread - it’s really helpful to hear of other people’s experiences. I started to with symptoms of Polymyalgia Rheumatica in July 2021. I was running marathons and ultras, aged 67, and felt fitter than ever before. Gradually, as symptoms worsened, running lessened and I gave up altogether by mid October. It took me another 10 months to get a diagnosis and steroid treatment. It was like a miracle in terms of the pain and I started getting fit - gently but with determination. For some reason, my left knee had been very painful for months prior to steroid treatment and still niggled afterwards - felt stiff and tight whilst jogging. About 5 weeks into my recovery programme the knee swelled a little and got warm. Was I aggravating the PR? Had I injured my knee? For two weeks I have backed off from all brisk walking, jogging, cycling and swimming and have followed RICE regime to no avail. I have now taped my knee with KT tape and am feeling much better - no sharp pains on moving. I’ll be interested to hear what the Consultant Rheumatologist has to say on Tuesday. Sorry for the essay but hope it adds to the knowledge base.
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