I have knee pain.
There it is, I said it.
I played a dad’s vs. sons wiffle ball game last weekend and limped for days. I’m skipping Monday night pickup basketball with the fellas. This morning, I went on a short trail run and I feel the pain as I type.
I’ve been running trail marathons every year or so for the last 10 years, and I love it. My morning adventure on the trails is never the same. There is a new animal, color or smell around every bend. It’s mushroom and spider web season right now, with the first layer of autumn leaves beginning to blanket the trail. By the end of a good run both my body and my mind feel like they should, except for my right knee these days!
A brief history.
Prior bouts of knee pain have successfully resolved with the following two strategies:
- Good form: short, quick strides (as close to 180 strides per minute) that land on the forefoot instead of the heel.
- Good shoes: lots of good, fresh cushion with less than 300 miles.
I dialed in my form years ago after joining group runs with the crazy ultra marathon guys and gals at 7 Hills Running Shop. Once you start paying attention, it’s easy to see why one person can run 100 miles at a time without injury, while another won’t last a 5K.
Usually it’s the shoes. Training 25 miles per week means you need new shoes every three months. It’s surprisingly easy to wear them beyond 300 miles, especially when the shoes still look good.
Well, my form hasn’t changed. I have new shoes, and I still have knee pain.
Here’s what I’m going to do about it:
Try out a home rehab program.
Apart from a horrific battle with a disc herniation several years ago, I’m thankful to say that I’m pretty much always pain free. That’s nice, but it means I rarely get to try things out and give patients a report from personal experience.
Through personal knowledge, conversations with physical therapists and research, I’ve put together a very quick exercise program that I think will help. I’ll be doing this program daily for the next two weeks and am excited to see if this works! Hopefully I’ll be back on the trails soon, and be able to share with patients what worked for my knee.
I’ll keep you posted!