It was once said that the only constant in life is change. Sometimes we have an opportunity to anticipate an upcoming change, but more often than not, change just shows up one day and the adjustment process begins.
About a month ago I was running near my home and enjoying a beautiful spring day. I was cruising along, listening to my audiobook, when I came down on my right knee and felt a twinge of pain. Not severe pain, but more like a weakness and sensation that my leg might give out.
I immediately stopped running and took a few steps. I had no more pain or limited mobility and the sensation left as quickly as it appeared. I hadn’t stepped off a curb, tripped or anything; I was simply running. I mentally logged the experience and finished my run with no second thought.
In the last 5-weeks, I’ve run almost 250 miles; including racing 3-half marathons in 1 hour and 35 minutes or less. Usually I run 1 half-marathon a month, but this spring I got ambitious, and my body finally told me it’d had enough.
Last Monday despite being fairly sore from my Mother’s Day race, I opted for an easy 6-mile recovery run instead of a rest day. I was stiff and sore, and hoped the run would loosen me up a bit.
Unfortunately, at the end of my run, my knee ached, ever so slightly. The pain didn’t last long so I went about my day, still sore and stiff. Tuesday, I opted for another 6-mile easy run. Later that evening while going up stairs after finishing some laundry, me knee ached. At this point, I was concerned something was going on.
Coach Paul told me to switch to cross-training to give my legs a break, so I’ve been swimming, biking, and rowing in an effort to maintain fitness minus running. With knee pain coming and going on Sunday, I opted to make an appointment at a local orthopedic doctor.
After taking my extensive medical history, training log and a few x-rays, it was determined that I’d ran myself into a case of runner’s knee. I learned that I have a few bone spurs on the outside of my knobby knees that actually bow slightly out. My abductor leg muscles need to be stronger to balance out my quads, but all things considered, it was a good medical report. No breaks, cracks or damage to any ligaments or meniscus as far as the x-rays show.
The prescription is time and patience so I can give my body the ability to “hurry up and get better.” 😂 The doc says somewhere between 4-6 weeks should be about right and if I don’t feel any better in 3 weeks, I can come back and pony up for a costly MRI.
In the meantime, I’ll follow doctor’s orders to heat and ice and add a few other holistic remedies to support my body as it heals. While change isn’t always fun or ideal, I feel grateful. My body has been through a lot, taken me far and never let me down. I’m grateful that my body possesses the ability to change, adapt and most importantly heal. My next race is 32 days away, and I can’t wait.