It has now been 5 days since I injured my knee when falling during the Whispering Pines 50K DNF, and it has been a long 5 days.
In the NFL when a player gets injured to a point where he will not be able to effectively play again during the regular season, he gets placed on the dreaded season-ending Injured Reserve (IR). If I were an NFL player in the middle of the season, I don’t think I’d be considered bad off enough to be placed on IR, but any plans I had for a long-distance race this summer are on hold as I wait to see how this latest issue plays out.
I haven’t been sidelined from running due to injury since September 2011 when an IT Band Syndrome flare-up limited me to about 10 miles for the month.
It was frustrating then and it is frustrating now, especially because this time I am more worried about how long I need to rest before my knee is truly healed.
I have had a couple of people make a comment to me about how you have to take care of your knees or they’ll be useless when you’re older, and that makes me scared to rush back to anything. Plus, I haven’t seen a doctor, because I really don’t think I need to, but their comments have made me second-guess that as well.
Since Saturday, when my knee was at its most painful and stiffest, and Sunday when it was at its most swollen, I have seen a lot of improvement. I have been wearing a knee brace every day to keep myself from bending it too much, since that is what causes the most discomfort, and I have been icing several times a day, incorporating some heat as well. Swelling is down and discomfort/pain is at a minimum.
I know it is silly to diagnose myself for anything via the Internet, but my initial symptoms fit very well with a knee sprain, and according to at least one site, a minor sprain could be fully healed within 2 weeks. If I am still experiencing any discomfort or pain 2 weeks post-injury, I will go see a doctor then to ensure there is nothing more serious at play. But for the most part, I am 100 times better than I was on Saturday and I am definitely going to play it safe as far as re-entering activity.
I will continue to look on the bright side that I didn’t break or tear anything, and pray that I will be able to return to some running within the next month. I also will definitely take being able to run a little less for granted.