Bridge to 10K

IC, dodgy knees and other musings

Two weeks ago I did a lovely 12k run and was feeling brilliant. The year had started off with great mileage. And then my left knee started hurting. Out of the blue, it hadn't hurt on the run, I hadn't fallen, knocked or twisted it or anything and 12k was not an extreme amount, it's sort of standard for my long runs. Going up and down stairs was extremely painful, walking involved twinges - running was obviously not on the cards for a while.

And whenever things like this happen I see it as the end of my running career. This is runner's knee, arthritis, the protective cartilage in my knee had been well and truly eroded, walking now meant bone rubbing on bone, it was going to get worse and at some point I would need an artificial knee. I would never run again.

DESPAIR😩

Well, I could still walk on the flat (with twinges). So I kept my steps up, doing walks in the morning instead of runs. Movement is good for bad knees. Slowly the twinges on the flat stopped. But going up and down stairs was still horrible. Son asked why I was limping. I never realized how many flights of steps there were on the way to work. I even changed my route to avoid them. Around the middle of last week I managed to go down a very small flight of stairs - WITHOUT PAIN! And on one of my morning walks I tried a gentle trot. Just 5 minutes, then a walking break, then another 5 minutes. It worked - and I beamed all day. The next day I ran 1km, took a break, then ran another and did 4K in total. I got down a longer flight of steps before the stabbing behind my knee cap started again and I started to think that maybe I will run again.

The body is an amazing thing and I am very grateful that I seem to heal reasonably quickly. I can look at runners now without going green with envy. I'm reading your posts with pleasure again. There were no twinges today - but it's the weekend and therefore no stairs. I will run slowly and carefully tomorrow. First 1k, then a walk, then another. And I will love every minute of it.

And I might even start Rignold's squats! I need to do something to strengthen my damned knees.

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Oh that was a scary read at first! I am terrified of injury and completely understand the catastrophising! Great that you are on the mend. All those KMs on your legs set you up for health and strength. I would really recommend Rignolds squat programme; great fun 😀

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Glad things are looking up. Had to laugh at where the thought processes took you - am just the same.

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Yeah, if anything lasts longer than one week then it's the end of the world as I know it!

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Skwaaats. Do the skwaaats. Although I don't know if your knee needs to be completely better before you do - Rignold may be able to advise.

I'm sorry about your knee though and I understand about the total end of the running career. I think I've got to the age now where every twinge is the harbinger of arthritis, rheumatism or general total collapse. It's never muscular, it's always a degenerative disease of some sort signifying the end. Not that I am a drama queen of any sort, you understand :D

I'm so glad you're getting better! Take it steady and you'll be back up to your 12ks and more, I'm sure :)

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I tried the first day of squats yesterday. My left knee felt very weak - and the rest of me wasn’t too great either😈 But I will persist and take it slowly. Like c25k sometimes it takes longer than 9 weeks to get there! Obviously something needs to be done or it will come back.

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Phew I was getting worried there! My knees are my weak point and I know they are the result of weak glutes. I've always done exercises but Rig's squats appear to be helping a lot. It's early days yet but all bodes well. Try them but make sure your form is right.

Just a word of caution. If your pain comes from say a tight ITB (weak glutes again) then it might return so be cautious and start stretching and foam rolling. Fingers crossed 🙂

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I started yesterday, but will be taking it very slowly!

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I have just spotted this and I am so glad to have read it. I could basically have written it myself (ok, up to the DESPAIR bit) and so now I hold out hope that the rest of my story will continue like yours too.

My daily routine involves lots of steps too, and the jewel in the crown is having to climb the Spanish Steps every day. There's a lift - but it's been out of order for two weeks 😐

Hope this is the definitive end of your knee woes.

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