What goes up must come down, my hope.

It was bound to happen ya’ll.  Sixteen days before the marathon my knee began to act up.  It cracked, it ached, it sent me straight into a panic.  Big sad face.

To clarify, it’s not hurting while running.  It’s the after the fact, during the day at work I feel it here and there.  It’s reminiscent of how it felt when I restarted running in March and April.  One thought I have is that it could be temperature and pressure changes that’s causing it to be irritable.  That did seem to be a factor last spring.  Or I’m just screwed, but it’s nice to blame the weather on my problems.

My worry-panic state of mind brought me to a lonesome Friday night at the pool.  I swam 70 laps, which equates to two miles.  That’s kind of a lot to swim.  A full ironman swims 2.4, not that I was getting any ideas, I just wanted to draw a picture of how far I swam.

I swam, I worried, my mind began to wander…

Remember Diana Nyad who attempted to swim from Cuba to Florida?  She trained hard.  Twelve hour swims, 8, 9, 10, 12, 15, 24, 29 hours in the ocean, again and again.

Pure dedication, and she didn’t make it.  Twenty-nine hours in she began to vomit and was pulled back into the boat.

“It was my decision to stop and nobody else’s.  I’m deeply grieved and disappointed, but I can hold my head up high.  We pictured that moment of me crawling up on that Key West shore.  We knew it was my year and my time, even at 61.  It was a fairy tale, but the fairy tale didn’t come true.”

For people over 60, she said, the goal should be “to live a life with no regrets and no worries about what you are going to do with your time.  Fill it with passion.  Be your best self.”

I’m not over 60, but I know my training up to this point was filled with passion.  I can own up to feeling sorry for myself right now, I DO, IT’S NOT FAIR, WHY ME, WTF, it’s hard not to feel the negativity, worry and defeat.  I know my knee very well, I know when I need to throw in the towel.

I’m hanging on tight to that towel.

I’m trying very hard to not let myself think for a second that I wasted my summer training for this thing.  I do enjoy training.  I like the chaos, the challenges, the holy-shit-it’s-humid, the looking forward to the next long run.  I like that.  It’s why I came back for more.  It gives my meaningless summer meaning.

Plus, I told myself going into this that there was a possibility of having to pull out of it.  That possibility is here.  I have to accept that.  Yes, I will likely feel sorry for myself and cry, but I will not spend another four months on the sofa regretting running another marathon.

There are still two weeks to wait it out on the sofaI MEAN SWIM AND BIKE, DUH, and hope that it’ll be 90 degrees again on October 9th so that there isn’t a cold front bothering my knee.

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17 thoughts on “What goes up must come down, my hope.

  1. Hang in there, Steena. If you aren’t able to do a run, your swimming or biking should compensate for the cardio. I hope it’s nothing more than a little bump in the road for you!

  2. Sweetie, hang in there. My knee STILL hurts sometimes, but rarely when I run. It’s usually when I’ve been sitting for a while. Imtry hard not to cross my legs and make sure I’m stretching well. And ICE after every run.
    You are strong girl. You can do this. I have faith in you (and your wonky knee!)

  3. You know, the title of your blog post is misleading. It doesn’t sound like your hope is down, and it doesn’t sound like you’re defeated. Sure you’re worried because of knee pain, but you’re being smart in your training. Just rest and stay loose. I know you’ll kick ass!

    • I guess what I meant with that title is that I was so cautious about getting my hopes up about even being able to do this, after my successful 17 mile run I let my guard down and got very excited that I’d get through training just fine. The title refers to the big pictures I guess.

  4. So sorry about the knee. I know how frustrating that is. You can definitely keep your fitness up through cross training. I hope everything turns out okay! have you been to a physical therapist?

  5. ((( Hug ))) On the up-side, you’re supposed to be entering the taper period right now anyway, right? And you’re cross-training like a bat out of hell – so even if you didn’t run a bit between now and the marathon, you’d still be keeping your cardio prepared. Good luck!

  6. Taper Taper – do not worry. You’ve done all the hard work and the journey is as great as the destination. Just shy of 2hr for your 1/2 during training? Amazing. Don’t forget your equally amazing 20 miler and the read the letter to the doc!

    But DON’T PUSH yourself even in swimming n biking. When my knee acts up and I need a good cardio work out, I take 12 or 15lb exercise bar and do tough upper body cardio/strength training workout. It’s a lot of fun (and your dog might even go crazy watching you!)

    We all have our fingers crossed fo you!

  7. Oh, NOOOO!! Oh, lady, I feel for you. I’m taping my knee up for the Run for the Cure on Sunday, and then it’s only swim/bike/row for me for at least four months. It sucks, and there are days (like today) when I think “you know, it’s probably just the weather”. Right.
    Sending good healing vibes your way!

  8. Don’t lose your hope now. You have your base, you trained hard over the summer, you have the miles under your belt, and the taper is for tapering and catching your breath. Time is on your side. As you know, I fought Achilles tendonitis and ITB syndrome most of last year and early spring of this year. I (literally) feel your pain. My knee also flares up occasionally and unpredictably. Ice helps, I think, and maybe some Advil. You certainly have to be careful but you won’t lose much of your endurance if you rest and stretch now. I keep my fingers crossed.
    Your form, by the way, was great when I saw you on John Nolen yesterday.

  9. Ack, so sorry to read this. Hopefully things will improve during your taper. You’ve worked hard for this, so my fingers are crossed that it’ll all workout for you.

  10. 1 step forward 2 steps back….I don’t believe you are done for good so just get over that notion….Give the knee some time to acclimate to the cold and keep it warm…baby it and see what it does for you. Using it will help more than not. Really, you are not out there running copius miles and multiple marathons. Listen to your body, learn from the past, and I think you’ll be a bit surprised. Like I told you, my hamstring always lets me know it’s there, but if I remember the lessons of the past then I’m usually good. Hang in there… little over a week to go 😉

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