Finally, My Knee Problem is Solved!! (some valuable info for you fellow runners)

3 04 2009

Yes, that’s right!!  I finally found out what’s wrong with my knee, and what’s been keeping me from running for what seems like an eternity!  I am so happy that I can now start with the proper rehab and be on my way to recovery!!!  So, I have a wonderful friend who’s dad is a physical therapist, and through his and his dad’s help we were able to diagnose the problem that I have been having with my knee for the past two months.  After telling my friend’s dad about all of my symptoms and through a process of elimination, he came to the conclusion that I have Pes Anserine Bursitis.  

Bursitis of the knee occurs when constant friction on the bursa causes inflammation. The bursa is a small sac that cushions the bone from tendons that rub over the bone. Bursae can also protect other tendons as tissues glide over one another. Bursae can become inflamed and irritated causing pain and tenderness.

 What causes this problem?

Overuse of the hamstrings, especially in athletes with tight hamstrings is a common cause of goosefoot. Runners are affected most often. Improper training, sudden increases in distance run, and running up hills can contribute to this condition.”
So, I know for sure that I hurt my knee by starting too fast too soon.  I have only been running for a little over a year and am an all or nothing type A personality.  I was a gym rat before I started running (being a trainer and all it’s hard not to be), and when I would lift it would be with the guys and It would always be “go heavy or go home”.  Of course, it wasn’t always like that with all of my workouts, but I push hard.  Let me just say that I am not saying that I aim to hurt myself by pushing so hard, I just have high expectations and like to feel like I am successful in everything I do.  This can be a blessing and a curse at the same time.
When I started running, I wanted to be fast and progress quickly.  I read a few books about beginning runners and asked lots of questions, I even had a friend that had been running for over 2 years and acted as my “coach”.   I ran (on the treadmill ) with next to her, and she comfortably ran a 7:30 mile, so it was hard not to feel the competetive spirit and try to keep up.  Stupid!! I didn’t know any better so I started my speed training about 3 months after I started running.  I get bored pretty easily, so working speed drills into my runs a few days a week kept me intertained and kept me from quiting when it got too hard.  What I should have been focusing on the most was my indurance, let the speed come later!!  I just recently found out from a fellow runner that has been in the game for about 15 years that you are supposed to get a good base mileage for about a year or so before you hit the heavy speed training such as fartleks and sprints.  What this does is gets your body ready and better adapted to the demands that running can put on your body so that you don’t get injured like I did.  I progressed fast….started running at a 9:30 mile, and before I injured myself I was at a 8:45 mile.  
Running has been my religion, so to speak, and I completely depended on it for my stress relief and as a way of getting to my “zen” place.  I started running after a very tramatic event in my life, and it was the only thing that helped me feel like I could go on, and everything would be okay…it was very theraputic.  It is amazing how it has changed my life.  Let me just say that this has been a very humbling experience for me though.  I depended a lot on running and when I realized that I couldn’t do it anymore (during a very stressful time in my life), it seemed that my world came crashing down all around me.  Sounds dramatic, I know….but that’s how I felt.  
In the past few months, I have had to go back to being a gym rat, which hasn’t been a bad thing.  I have been working on building my muscle mass so that I can keep my metabolism up, and have been trying out different classes at the gym as alternate forms of cardio.  As boreing as it has been, it has been nice to change up the routine a bit.
So, what am I doing to rehab the knee now that I know what my injury is?
  • Lots of stretching! Focusing the most on loosening up my tight hamstrings and hips.
  • Strength training work on my quads, glutes, and hamstrings (slow and easy, not hard and heavy like I would have done before)
  • Icing 4 x a day followed by anti-inflamitory meds

So, there you go.  My injury story in a nutshell.  What do I hope that you take from this post?  Please be mindful of your body when training in any sport and take it easy on your body….it’s the only one that you have.  Don’t rush into anything,( running or any other sport that you do will be there forever).  But if you aren’t good to your body, you might have to look at running from the side lines instead of being a part of the action!


OH! And I have a question for you guys.  Have any of you out there suffered from running related injuries?  If so, what are they, and what did you do to recover?




One response

3 04 2009

I’ve actually had your injury a few years ago (also known as breaststroker’s knee), but we caught it early and I was lucky that it didn’t really interfere with my running and my recovery was quick. Truthfully I think all I did was add in a bit more yogo. I hope you are on the road again soon.

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