I've been running since the beginning with my left knee strapped up as it has always been a source of discomfort and worry, since I dislocated it as a child. It sometimes aches, and occasionally clicks. it's generally not a great joint and I would regard it as my weak link.
Recently I have been more aware that my knee, whilst it is a million times stronger than it was at the start of C25k, will not get any stronger than it is now, as I'm not really giving the muscles round it a chance to take the full strain. So I decided last night to ditch the knee strap and go for a gentle run to assess how the knee copes. I set myself my usual 5k loop, as it has plenty of bail out short cuts, should my knee play up. The whole run was fine, my knee ached a little on the walk home so I took an ibuprofen to limit any swelling and went easy on it the rest of the evening. No niggles this morning, it feels as good as it does after a normal 'strapped up' run.
Besides this, the run was pretty terrible. I got caught short running along the beach and had to make a quik dash to the Esplanade Bar to use the facilites (thank jebus they were open!!), then the cold air seemed to be playing havoc with my lungs as I couldn't seem to fill them properly and really struggled most of the way round. Having a break 15 minutes in wasn't good either, as I felt like I had to start from scratch. My phone strapped to my arm kept loosening and when I tried to fix it, I kept turning the volume down on my playlist. I had to stop running a couple of times to sort it out. And finally, I decided to do the run backwards so I could test myself going up the hill on High Street (It's not called high st for nothing). I managed about half the hill before having to stop, which isn't too bad, but I'm sure if my lungs weren't complaining about the cold I would've made it to the top. By the time I got to the top I still had about a km to the point that i had set to end, but the fight had gone from me and I strolled back. At the top of High Street I had done 4.65km in 32 minutes (not including loo break, and several stops to curse loudly at my phone). Not my greatest run but encouraging that my knee held up.