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Running and Minor knee injuries


and Athena said
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I am new to running, inspired by my sister who is running the Boston Marathon next month (!!!). I have worked up my stamina for the past 2 months and can now run upwards of 4 miles. The treadmill gets excruciatingly boring after 3 miles, so last week it was a beautiful day in Brooklyn and I decided to run outside. Where there are.... hills. And running downhill I thought I was going easy and slow, but apparently not easy and slow enough. I aggravated my left knee and have been wearing a little Ace brace.

 

What are some activities you suggest to do in between now (soreness) and all better, when I can run? I've already been keeping off it all weekend and I wouldn't run on it yet, but I want to do *something*. I am starting to weight-train, is it safe for me to just go and do upper-body work? Are there particular exercises that are good to help my knee recover? I assume that many runners have had similar experiences, and I would appreciate any advice you could give me.

 

Thanks,

Athena

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yeah you dont wanna make hill running an everyday ordeal and only incorporate it once you have a solid base down. I typically will sprint hard up a hill and either walk or lightly jog down. Now if you were going for distance I could see how you would just keep your normal pace.

 

Look up "Kinesio Tape" if you wanna try and do something with your legs. Try and find out exactly where the pain is as well. Upper body workout should be a green light. Remember to stretch your legs and knee(s).

 

More than likely what will hurt it will be Leg Extentions due to the stress on the patella. Try Abduction and Adduction work on the legs. It will force your knee to work, but may not hurt it. You dont wanna stop everything. See what hurts and what doesnt and report back.

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Thanks for the advice! I did well today, worked on upper-body stuff with weights while sitting or lying down. I usually do more things standing up. I'm not a big machine person, but I did use them a little for my legs today as you suggested. The next time I run, I'm going to be walking down the hills. It's my patellar tendon that got angry.

 

Have you had success with the Kinesio tape? I am using a little Ace brace, but my leg is small in circumference I have to secure it with duct tape or it slips down over my kneecap.

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One of the great things I learned about knee pain and running is that if it is below the patella that it usually means the quads aren't strong enough to handle the pounding. So in this book "Peak Condition", there is a technique by which you sit on the floor with legs extended, then contract your quads in four or so sets 8-12 times for about 10-20 seconds each, then rest for a few hours, then do it again. I've done it 5-10 times in a day when I reminded myself and you wouldn't believe the results. The first few sets I felt the pain, then the pain was gone. After a couple days of doing it, the pain was gone completely. I suppose it works as minor strength training session, but it really works and I do this now immediately when I feel the lower patella pain with positive results each time.

 

This is the book I got the technique from (not available new right now):

 

http://www.amazon.com/Peak-Condition-Strategies-Rehabilitate-Injuries/dp/0517562464

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  • 1 month later...

"What are some activities you suggest to do in between now (soreness) and all better"

 

BIKE, BIKE, BIKE ... switch off using an emphasis on leading with the ball of the foot and leading with the heel.

 

ROWING MACHINE ... emphasize upper body and don't lock out knees

 

Elliptical - go backward and forward - emphasize a moderate resistance rather than speed.

 

USE A FOAM ROLLER on the IT bands and inner thighs ... as well as quad, ham and low back.

 

STRETCH and strengthen all muscles of leg.

 

STRETCH

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  • 4 weeks later...

I overheard some people from a running group talking about injuries. One of the trainers basically said that running is hard, and it hurts a lot sometimes too. Basically it was said that you just have to run through the pain, and most of the time it will subside, and go away. I have experienced this, sometimes my knee will start to ache, but as i keep running it does eventually go away. Also cross training is a great tool to implement.

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I have the knee from hell, and I've found 2 things that are KEY to minimizing discomfort:

1. Invest in some quality shoes. Go to a specialty running store if you can and they will find a good pair. It will be pricey, but cheaper than a titanium patella!

2. Don't run downhill. The impact is greater and you'll do a lot of damage, so slow to a fast walk on downhills. (I can run uphills okay, because my muscles are more engaged and stabilized my knee, but everyone is different).

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