Thursday, September 5, 2013

Running Without Injury and a Facebook Contest!

My left knee has issues... Like major ones. I tore my meniscus in high school and a second time a few years latter. In 2008, I was having some of the same issues in the knee that I had when dealing with a meniscal tear. My Orthopedic Surgeon suggested we scope it and so we did. But when he got into the knee, he found that I had cracked about a quarter size of bone off of my knee cap. (Gross, I know.)

But he fixed it and told me after the surgery that I have little to no cartilage in my knee. Then in 2010, I was in a bad car accident and banged up my knee again. This time, we had to scope it again.

So all that to say, I have to be extremely cautious while running. Running is so much more than exercise for me. It really is therapy for me, helping me to release tension and stress, while I get to enjoy the scenery around me.

Last Saturday, after an easy 7 mile run, (I'm in the middle of training for the Marine Corps Marathon, so 7 miles is an easy run right now), my knee began to swell internally.



By Sunday, it was so swollen, I could not bend it. So on Monday, off to my OS I go. MRI was done and he found the knee to actually be in the same condition as it was before. No damage. After getting chewed out for running (I never told him that I became a runner), we had a long talk about how I could continue to run with my knee being in the condition that it is in.

Here is the verdict, some of my opinion and some doctor's advice. Running is hard on your joints. Everybody knows that. But it is soooo good for other areas of your body, namely your heart.

Proper training is key. No one and I mean, no one, can just wake up one day, decide to go for a mile run (without proper training and conditioning) and expect to enjoy the run. It would be miserable. Your breathing would struggle, you would probably have a crazy high heart rate and most of your body would hurt, while trying to revolt.  It's like weight lifting. You aren't going to walk into the gym one day and lift 150 lbs. You have to build your muscles up to that. Start by walking, but walk as fast as you can for the amount of time you have. Do this 3 times a week. Each week, you will find you will be walking at a faster pace. Before you know it, you won't be able to walk any faster. You will be ready to begin to add a little jog to your walk.

This is when I recommend Jeff Galloway and his Run-Walk-Run system. It has been the foundation of my training for anything. The concept is that by taking small walk breaks during a run, fatigue is almost non-existent, you are able to finish strong and healthy. My recovery time after a marathon is about 1-2 days. By the 3rd day, you would have never thought I ran a race. I believe this system speeds up recovery time.

This system will allow me to be a strong, successful runner long term. Not just for the time being before I get an injury and won't be able to do it anymore.

I get told over and over again from people that they hate running and I will admit, I did to at one point. I wasn't conditioned and it was miserable as I described above. We are created to run and I believe anyone can become a runner with proper conditioning.

Stop by this week on my Facebook page Healthy Happy Girl. I'm giving away one of my favorite cookbooks, Deliciously Organic!

 
All you have to do is stop by my Facebook page, "Like" it and Share the contest post on your Timeline.
 
The winner will be chosen Thursday, September 12.
I'll email the winner via Facebook!
 
Happy Running!
 

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