The good news: I talked to my friend Tracy, who is about to get her PhD in Physiology, and now know what is wrong with my knee. That means I have a game plan to tackle the problem. Something to preoccupy myself with and to make myself stronger again. I know the likely cause, and with enough patience I know the solution.
The bad news? It's IT band syndrome (ITBS). Yuck.
Here is the gist of what is going on with my knee. My IT band got tight, either from the race or too much biking. Also, the muscles above and to the right of my right knee are significantly weaker than on the other side. Now that she's pointed it out, I can tell that it's actually visually noticeable. I can see the problem.
Great. We know the problem. Now, what to do about it?
- Foam roll the shit out of it (thats the technical term), twice a day
- Dig into the trigger points to loosen it up
- Incorporate some of my old PT exercises back into my routine
- RICED (Thats RICE + drugs)
- Do some balance exercises too, to strengthen the leg
- Get back on top of my core workouts
I'm also going to keep at it with the swimming. I've swam twice this week just using the pull buoy (no kicking), and although its extremely boring my knee always feels better afterwards. It's all I can do to get an aerobic workout in, so I'm going to force myself to go at it with all I got.
So there's the game plan. Now all that stands between me and running is to do it. Time to get on top of it!