So I went to the doctor…

Running Sucks
picture by Alain Limoges on Flickr 

I started writing this post in Dutch. I guess this English is going to take some getting used to.

Today I visited an orthopaedist (had to look that one up ;-)). He came highly recommended by several people in my family and they can know. My genes predict a very bad future when it comes to knees, and this guy is a knee specialist. 

I was scared, I guess. When people asked me about it I answered I’d be grateful if it didn’t come to surgery. But that’s a lie. Even if he tells me that I can’t run the 10 Miles in April I’ll be devastated. When I started running in September to prepare for a 5K run two months later, I had no hopes except running that race. But as I progressed a small spark of hope settled inside of me: what if I can run the 10 Miles in Antwerp? As someone who weighed almost 100kg, this sounded insane, but when I ran my first 10K at the end of 2014 that spark had become a roaring fire. I enlisted in several runs (5K in a santa suit, 7K at Francorchamps, an Urban Trail of 12k here in Antwerp) and started seeing the future. Dreams were becoming very tangible.

Three weeks ago I went for a run in a nearby park. It has a perfect 10K parcours. Halfway I had to stop because of pains on shins and knees. I decided to take two weeks off. But the first run after that made me stop after 3K. That’s when I decided to visit the doctor.

The good news is I don’t need surgery or anything, my knees don’t seem to be the problem. His take: Shin splints, which is quite common. Although he’s not ruling out a stress fracture. He told me to take 6 weeks off and try a (small) run after that. If that goes well, I should be able to start building my distance up again. If I feel any pain however, it might be a stress fracture which means I’m out for another 3 months, at least. Besides that he told me to visit a foot specialist to see whether my shoes need any further modifications since he thinks I’ve been fairly careful and had the pain nevertheless.

But bottom line is that I won’t be running any of the runs I had planned. The 6 weeks out mean I miss both the 7 and 12K runs and after that I have to start from 0 again. There is no way I can build up towards the 10 Miles in a safe way.

Half a year, 3 times a week.
All for nothing.
That sucks.
Big time.

2 replies on “So I went to the doctor…”

Ouch. If it’s a small consolation: you’re not alone. I’ve contracted the dreaded “runners’ knee”. I’m seeing a physical therapist right now and I’m applying loads of ice daily. And yes, I also got advice to see a chiropodist.

Apparently, lots of people who start running, struggle with leg problems sooner or later.

Luckily it wasn’t all for nothing… remember the good feelings at the end of every run, the beautiful views while running, … Still, I wish you the best for future runs.

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