Well here is the latest update on my knee. I went and saw a specialist sports doctor on Monday. Turns out I was in good hands. For the last two seasons she was the team doctor for the Canberra Raiders, so she knows what she is talking about. Although she was a little overwhelmed by my impressive size; she is more used to those little guys from the NRL; she was very helpful.
Turns out I have iliotibial band syndrome caused by weak hip abductor muscles, my gluteus medius to be precise. So I have to do butt exercises to fix it up. The white band you see in the picture runs down the right hand side of my right leg, as I run the band rubs back and fourth over that ball looking thing just inside it (the lateral femoral epicondyle). This gets painful after a while.
Iliotibial band syndrome is one of the leading causes of lateral knee pain in runners. The iliotibial band is a superficial thickening of tissue on the outside of the thigh, extending from the outside of the pelvis, over the hip and knee, and inserting just below the knee. The band is crucial to stabilizing the knee during running, moving from behind the femur to the front during the gait cycle. The continual rubbing of the band over the lateral femoral epicondyle, combined with the repeated flexion and extension of the knee during running may cause the area to become inflamed, or the band itself may suffer irritation. For more info and diagrams click here.
What does it mean regarding the marathon? Well I had a cortisone injection which means no training for 48 hours, after that I am meant to do cross training for a week, swimming or cycling, and then I can get back into my running. So it looks like the marathon will go ahead but I will be a couple of weeks behind in my training.
Where before I was aiming to finish in a particular time, I think the goal will now be just to finish rain, hail or shine and then move onto other challenges in life.
PS: I will still come up with another 5 good reasons to run, still thinking though…