Tuesday, May 03, 2016

Trying to Run

I had a pretty good summer of running last year. By the end of the season I was doing a 20 k run most weekends, and a couple more 10 k runs during the week. My 10 k time was down to 47 minutes which I was happy with.

So this summer I was keen to get out there and do even better. As usual I hadn't done a lot of running over the winter, but I'd managed to get on the treadmill fairly regularly.

But when I went out for my first outdoor run of the season I barely managed a few kilometers before my knee got painful enough that I walked the rest of the way home. (I'd been running farther on the treadmill, but for some reason that hadn't been a problem.)

The symptoms were classic for IT band problems, a common issue that affects roughly 1 in 10 runners. My right IT band had been a little sore last summer but it hadn't developed into a knee problem like now.

I crossed my fingers that it would go away once I got back into shape. I'd run as far as I could until it got painful and gradually worked up to 10 km. It was better if I ran fast, which is typical for IT band problems.

When I headed out this last Sunday I was keen to go longer. It was a beautiful day and I felt good. I was sure I was improving. But when I reached 6 k the pain started to come back. I made it through 10 k but no more, and afterwards my leg was pretty sore.

I've started doing exercises recommended for IT band problems. Apparently it can be a tough, slow process to get rid of it. I've still got my fingers crossed.

Today was another beautiful day and I was determined to get out for a run, but I knew it couldn't be a long slow one. So hills it was! Running uphill didn't bother my knee at all. Normally I would jog slowly down, but that did bother my knee. It was either walk or run fast downhill. Running was more fun :-) The good part is that the workout didn't bother my IT band at all, so at least I can stay in some kind of shape.

I'm really craving a nice long run, but I have a feeling it will be shorter workouts for the next while.

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