Thursday, September 23, 2010

I tried to be a runner...

...and failed.  About 7 weeks ago, I decided that I was going to get off my hide and follow my husband's footsteps into the world of running.  Growing up and all throughout high school, I was a competitive swimmer, but never a runner.  Figured might as well give it a shot.

So I went out with him twice and then tried to do it a bit on my own. Decided I would try the ole Couch to 5K program and see how that went for me.  I felt really good getting up and outside in the gorgeous South Carolina weather.  Until the pain arrived....

After my third trip out for a walk/run around out neighborhood (1/3 mile loop - tried to do at least 3 loops), I started to notice shooting pains in my left knee.  I figured it was just not used to being used and maybe a little of the weigh I've been carrying around for the last few years.  So I ignored i; but after it happened again after my next try outside and continued to hurt for another week on top of that, I knew something was wrong.  So I spent a week doing some Wii workouts inside.  I figured low impact might help the good ole knee settle down.  Wrong.  Squats are not conducive to nursing a knee injury. 

So what did I do... ignored it.  Five weeks (one of those including a family vacation) went by before I finally (at the urging of my husband) decided that I might need to see a doc.  Over these 5 weeks my knee hurt a bit here and there but not too much, but I also wasn't doing anything.  Lucky for me, my coworker is an avid runner and has tons of contacts in our area.  She put out some feelers to a running group and one person was kind enough to get me into a physical therapy center.. for FREE!  (its good to know people)

So last Friday, I got a free consultation with a PT guy.  He had me do some exercises and did some strength tests and apparently, my left side is weak.  I hate weakness.  I was assigned / prescribed a set of strengthening exercises / stretches that should help me build up strength in my left leg and hip.  I need to do these for 4 - 6 weeks and slowly ease back into walking / running.  This past week, I've done the exercises every other day (should do them right now) and I have noticed that my knee isn't hurting too much and there is no more swollen-ness.  Great news!

I'm going to try to hit the pavement again sometime these week and at least walk a mile and see how it feels after that.  From there, my goal is to ramp up my walking to gradually.  Looking to do up to 3 miles of walking with weekly half mile increases and once I can master that with no pain, I'm going to add the running back in.

We'll see how it goes.  Off to do my stretches.

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