Lessons learned from a habitual outdoor runner

Month: December 2019

December 2019 updates

There’s a fine line between wisdom and zeal. I ran 2 miles today. Slow, but a run nonetheless. It actually felt pretty good on the knees, this is where wisdom comes in. After being over zealous in September and making the decision to try a 6-mile run too soon after an injury which left me without running for three months I may have learned my lesson.

The desire to run longer and farther was there this morning, but the discipline of the last few months had me stop at two-miles and go for a bike ride to complete my workout.

Speaking of the bike(s), I’m learning more about the care-and-feeding of a bike and had to replace the bottom bracket bearing set on Goose after 1900 miles or so. Previously, I had not worked this extensively on a bicycle so it was new territory in parts and tools. The Internet is always helpful when learning new things so after learning about it I ordered the parts and tools. Things came together pretty well and I was able to get Goose back in action.

While Goose was down and out waiting for repair I purchased a cheap bike from Walmart I named Kermit (see Goose and Kermit below). It’s a long story, but I would have to agree with the majority of the Internet concerning the “Walmart bike” as they really don’t know how to assemble them well. Perhaps I’ll do a separate post about the department store bike experience.

Kermit helped bridge the gap while Goose was down and now I’m thankful to have a backup bike when necessary. You may be thinking, isn’t that expensive to have two bikes? Kermit was $110 and Goose was $170. My shoe expense was about $125 a quarter when I was running every day, so I didn’t see this as an outlandish expense. Perhaps I do rationalize and say these costs are quite a bit cheaper than my copay at the physicians office was starting to accumulate before I decided to take control of my health, so there are other ways to think about it. 🙂

So I’m back to riding Goose when the roads are decent and I’m full of gratitude to ride and run this much in December as it’s been a mild month here in the Midwest.

Knee status – 12/1/19

I keep saying… it’s getting better and it is. Normal movement pain is down to 1-2% range, flexibility is +90%, strength is over 90% as well. Yet, I cannot run without significant discomfort and fear of re-injury.

The picture above helps with my explanation of this injury. All of the soft tissue items were impacted by this injury event.

The meniscus was the original damage back in July, then when I overdid it by running 6 miles in September everything else was damaged.

The ligaments on both sides and the patella have caused the most pain throughout this recovery. We take our working knees for granted way too much, well, at least I have not been as grateful as I should have been for working joints.

After the 6 mile mistake, kneeling and bending that knee included extreme pain. Mobility, range, and pressure were very limited. There were even periods where pain would shoot through the knee just sitting still.

The weeks following have been a series of mat exercises, yoga, Pilates, and any other gradual stretching it allowed me. Daily bike rides and walks have been instrumental in the healing process.

I’m not going to press it. Now that we’re into December we’ll continue to adjust to whatever winter brings and I’m hopeful this may be the month I can attempt to run again.

Pursue health

An object at rest remains at rest, or if in motion, remains in motion at a constant velocity unless acted on by a net external force. – Newton’s first law (extrapolation)

Our mortal bodies left to themselves will self-destruct. We must pursue healthy nutrition and physical movement to counter balance. Our bodies don’t appear to be designed to lounge in comfort for extended periods, in fact, when in excess, comfort turns into discomfort. This becomes more obvious the longer we occupy this form.

I exercise everyday. Every-single-day. Why? In my mid 30’s the above became very apparent, yet I did what we humans usually do, ignored it and somehow believed the 18 year-old version of me was going to show up again. He didn’t.

In my mid 40’s the visits to the physicians and modern equipment and medications were being prescribed. If things were going to get better for this body someone had to do something. Oh, that was me, nobody else could do it. I wrote about this in more detail in some of my early posts on this blog.

So now each day I pursue my health.

If it’s going to be, it’s up to me.

November 2019 Stats

November is in the books and riding the winter “roller coaster” makes things dynamic each day. Out of the 30 days I was able to ride 21 and had to walk or workout indoors the remainder.

I’ll write a separate post about the health and recovery process, so here are the stats.

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