So...among the many recent successes I've had in my training so far this season, I have been dealing with some pretty painful knee tendinitis for the past week. More specifically, I have Runner's Knee. I took off from running all last week and gave some time to ice multiple times daily, while continuing to swim and bike (which does not bother my knee). The knee was feeling better by Saturday and I decided to give it a test run on Sunday. The first mile felt good, but then the next couple were kind of painful, so I decided to turn around about 3.5 miles into the run and not risk further injury by running to far (hoping for 10 miles) on a bad knee. After the first 5 miles, my knee started feeling better and I finished my 7 mile run strong, with an average pace in line with my typical training runs. I could still feel the pain, but I felt much better than I had been. Not sure where that puts me.
Walking into work today, I can feel some pretty painful knee movement. So I guess that means I really need to cut back on all running and give running a rest for longer than a week to see how my knee responds. The troubling part is that I am in the final month countdown till the National Marathon. I believe I have done all the hard work I need to succeed in the marathon (including one 20 miler), but I had planned on doing another. Given this knee pain, I'm not going to risk further injury before the race. I'd rather go into the race being under trained, than over trained. The pain comes and goes. Some points during the day, I forget I am having knee issues. Other times, its pretty painful. The truth is that I can deal with the pain while running (it actually hurts less if it is acting up when running than it does when it acts up while walking). I'm definitely not going to run on it in the short term in the hopes that it all clears up sooner rather than later. Either way, I think I am starting my marathon taper a bit earlier than planned.
So that leads me to my next question - I plan to keep cross training with less impactful sports (ie swimming and biking) that don't irritate my knee. But do I even bother trying to run on my knee before the marathon?