Thursday, December 12, 2013
Stand down, then attack
DIAGNOSIS: my primary care physician insists the pain in my knee is NOT the result of a tear or a strain (so, no torn meniscus!). In fact, he thinks this is simply a case of runner's knee, which, having read the symptoms more thoroughly, I am inclined to agree.
THERAPY: I'm to take at least 3 weeks off of running (maybe 4). I'm already 4 days in and definitely don't feel much pain (unless I walk up/down steps, which I am attempting to limit) so time off will definitely help. I'm also to begin a series of stretches/strength exercises aimed at the muscles around my knee. I'm to take Naprosyn for the pain/swelling.
NEXT STEPS: If pain persists I might need to get an X-ray, but I'm hoping some real rest (more than a week), strength, stretching and drugs (essentially an all out attack on this thing from different "fronts") will do the trick.
However, I need a comeback plan - a sensible weekly uptick in mileage once I am in the clear. The last thing I want to do is start running too much, too soon and have to start all over again. Have any Red Fox blog readers (who are runners) had runner's knee and made a successful return to training (does anyone even read this blog anymore)? If so, I'd be curious to know the weekly totals you limited yourself to.
UPDATE: GRC's Michelle Miller offered up some good advice:
The best approach is simply increasing miles as the pain allows. Meaning, stopping a run just before the point it begins to become an issue. Over time that stopping point should come later and later into the run. Most importantly, though, is also addressing the muscle tightness that led to the problem in the first place. I see a PT regularly to "release" any muscles that are binding up. I've asked how to prevent this from happening and the only answer is not running so hard/much. Right. No wonder professional athletes have a team of support staff at their disposal on a daily basis. It doesn't help we are also getting older and our odometers are reading more miles than I want to know.
Keep it coming!