As a runner, you always have to keep in mind that injuries will occur from time to time. You hope that they are few and minor and pray to avoid the big one. In the 23 months that I have been running, I encountered many minor, nagging injuries; but nothing that forced me to take time off. In fact, I actually was able to continue running through all of them, including this one; which is why I know it became worse.
I've been having this nagging issue behind my knee off and on that made it uncomfortable to full extend my right leg at times. It happened months earlier and like usual, just went away. This time it was sticking around a little longer so I tried stretches to see if I just needed to loosen something up. The next morning I woke up to a slightly swollen knee and had some difficulty bending the knee. Me being the hardheaded person I am and knowing how I've run through past injuries, figured it would just go away.
I headed out the door around 7 a.m. and started my run. Despite the injury, I felt good overall. I stopped at the first intersection and was surprised when my watch said I was running a 7:41 average pace through the first 2.25 miles. That made me think I would be okay. So instead of turning around to play it safe, I continued on. When I got to the halfway point and stopped for my quick breather, I was again surprised that through 5.75 miles, I had maintained a 7:54 average pace.
So on I went, taking a short cut on the way back just because it was getting warmer than predicted very quickly and I was ready to get off of the knee. Around 2 hours later, I finished up at 10 1/2 miles, averaging an 8:04 per mile pace. Then reality kicked in. As my adrenaline started to fade and my body relaxed, the knee tightened up and the swelling started to increase. I laid in bed, taking anti-inflammatory aspirin and icing the entire area but it wasn't helping. As I tried to go to sleep, I started to feel some pain and discomfort and didn't want to wait until the morning to see a doctor. My wife took me to the emergency room where they diagnosed the injury as a sprain knee; but from my days of wrestling, this looks and feels worse. I sprained my knee before and it wasn't this bad; but maybe this is just a more severe version of a knee sprain.
So as I anxiously wait for my doctors visit tomorrow morning to have my knee drained, I pray that it truly is nothing more than a knee sprain. I pray that once the fluid is removed, I will feel less discomfort, regain movement in the area, and begin the healing process. A sprained knee usually takes 3-6 weeks to heal. Once I read that, and remembered my previous experience, I knew I was in for my toughest test as a runner. Mentally I have overcome so many things and amazed myself in so many ways. This will be another one but in another capacity. I already know that there are going to be days I become depressed at the fact that I am unable to run. Just looking at running posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram in the last 48 hours have started to disappoint me and I don't even want to open my running app and see the progress my friends are making.
So I kindly ask for those who believe in prayer, to keep me in their prayers. Since announcing the injury I have received a lot of encouraging messages and have realized the impact my running and daily posts make in people's lives. I am praying for a speedy recovery so I can get back out on the road and trails and do what I have fallen in love with over the last 23 months.