Well, I am one day out from Run for the Lakes and I am a go to do the race.
That said I am not exactly going into it with great confidence. Since my last post I have been dealing with constant knee pain and up through Wednesday I was really thinking about pulling the plug.
First some background, over the last 4 weeks, I was able to hobble through a couple of longer runs but they were not fun nor effective for giving me confidence that I could maintain a marathon finishing pace. The problem with the knee is after we returned from vacation each run seemed to hurt more. I was in San Jose last week and I went for a 4 mile run and got through it but it was a struggle. The next day I went to Rancho San Antonio and had to walk more than I ran and my pace was very slow when I did run. On Saturday I went for a 7 mile run with my daughter in Lebanon and that run pretty much told me that I was nearing a decision point. I took Sunday, Monday and Tuesday off to let the pain and swelling subside which takes me to Wednesday. I had hoped that with 3 days off I would be able to start the run pain free or at least reduced but after a 1/4 mile I knew I had reached my decision point.
So I headed over to Twin City Orthopedics in Burnsville, they have walk-in appointments and less than 10 minutes later I was getting it checked out. They took X-rays to make sure that they looked good and then examined the knee. The doctor pointed out on the X-ray that I had the start of osteoarthritis in the knee which he considered somewhat normal since he knew I had knee surgery 10+ years earlier. He then took the knee through the movements and gave me the news of a torn meniscus which surprised me a little as I was hoping that Kevin's diagnosis of a bursa/tendon issue was the cause, oh well.
He said I could run on it and it would be all about my ability to manage the pain. Since I have had surgeries for my previous meniscus tears, my concern is how much meniscus do I have left in this knee. So I am hoping to avoid surgery, he of course said if I wasn't running on it, that for normal everyday activities I would probably be able to avoid it. Since the knee isn't catching and taking into account that probably half of the meniscus might already be gone from the first surgery, he seemed to think it's a smaller tear and might be manageable even for running. Of course it would take a MRI or surgery to confirm.
What he offered to do is to give me a steroid shot in the knee with the belief it could reduce the swelling and that should give me a shot at the marathon on Saturday. He said no running on it until the marathon to give it the best chance to help. He wasn't as confident about the rest of the races for the year but thought this marathon would provide me some insight.
So there it is, on to Brainerd for a marathon test.
Based on how things go it will probably dictate my year as if I have significant pain then surgery may be where I want or need to go. My hope is that I can manage it and run the races for this year as planned. Stay tuned.