My Spring race schedule is a pretty simple formula… 2 Half Marys, a Full Mary followed another 2 Half Marys, with 2 weeks between each. A marathon sandwich if you will.
I ran the first of these in Tampa at the Gasparilla Distance Classic. I had a nagging knee pain in my left knee but I decided to just run through the pain. Upon our return I decided I better figure out this knee thing.
After some self diagnosis and help from my Sports Med friend Mary, we decided it was probably Runner’s Knee or tendonitis. I iced it and stretched a lot. Just to be clear, it only hurts when I go down stairs, squad, push off for a run or lunge left. Normal day-to-day activities feel normal. The problem with this is that my normal day-to-day activities are about to switch into triathlon training hyper drive as the Spring is near.
A painful decision was made not to run the NYC Half (my favorite Half Mary EVER) and try and heal up for the Connemarathon in Ireland.
Abs and I met up with Susan, Dan, Ali, Brian, Jess and Lora at Engineers Gate to form Cheer Squadron A. Very elite, we even had cowbells and a foam finger from a Yankees game. Although I was somewhat sad that I was not racing, part of me was happy because it was like 25 degrees which is out of my comfort zone.
I saw many a friend running and destroying the course, which to a New Yorker is his or her back freakin yard what! Erica, Maura, Bojana, Ben, Josh K (demon of speed), Kevin (also a demon of speed), Kelly, Eliz, Eissa and probably a few others that I can’t remember. Way to go team, many a PR was had!
This last week I have been trying new techniques like heating my knee and oh, seeing a sports med doctor! Josh K recommended this guy and since Josh is a pretty serious runner I went.
Guess what? Heating the knee was bad idea. I have bursitis, which to me is better than having Runner’s Knee because its a bit more controllable. “Hey Baker, what the hell is bursitis? Are you going to need a robotic knee with an ipod adapter and built in water reservoir?” I wish kid, I wish. I hate carrying my iPod. Between our bone and our tendons are bursa, which reduce friction between the two. My bursa is irritated and pissed off and needs to be iced. Basic treatment (which all athletes know) is RICE… Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation.
I am very relieved to have some sort of pinpoint on my wonky knee. I also think I know what caused it. A week or so before the Gasparilla Half I was running the bridal path (Kel, remember I met up with you for a few miles) and rolled my ankle. Rather than stop I just ran through the pain. Now, because I was being tough and stubborn I have to suffer, lesson learned.
I have 2 weeks to the Connemarathon and my knee is already almost pain free. This doesn’t mean I’m going to run it, I’m just being hopeful.
As you can imagine I have been very depressed the last 4 weeks and in a funk. To know that running will only agitate your injury makes you crazy. I live to be active, to run, bike, swim, skateboard and really just bounce around all over. It really just goes back to one of my philosophys of why I run. I run to feel alive and because I can. I run for charities to run for those who cannot run. Not that I AM one of the people who cannot run I realize just how much we must cherish our health and the ability to move gracefully across this Earth, with speed, determination and heart.
Go run, because you can.