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You can’t outrun heredity!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Lord knows I’ve tried.

I’m sidelined for three weeks due to a left knee ‘injury’ which my doctor ascribes to arthritis. I shouldn’t be surprised. My grandmother had crippled hands for years from arthritis. My mother had deformed hands from arthritis. My father had occasional moderate arthritis.

Twenty years ago I developed arthritis in my hands. One finger at a time blew up. The pain would wake me up at night. I had to have my wedding ring cut off my finger. And one by one the fingers returned to normal and I haven’t had a problem in my fingers since.

I occasionally have pains on the left side of my neck. The doctor said arthritis. Once I started running, that pain pretty much went away.

Every time I’ve gone in with pain to one knee or the other, he says arthritis. This time he also said no running for three weeks. None. No dancing. No walking, except to get around as needed. A cortisone shot to the knee, and twelve hours later I have some relief. And I’m to do physical therapy to strengthen the knee.

I don’t usually listen very well. I think it doesn’t apply to me. I think the pain is minor, it doesn’t hurt enough to warrant stopping. I think I’m tougher than all of this. I refuse to wimp out.

I also know this is the doctor who told me I wasn’t built to be a marathoner. When I protested he told me I probably had one in me, but then I should switch to much shorter distances. He’s not a runner. He doesn’t get it.

I also have an ortho who does get it, but he couldn't see me for weeks, and that wasn't going to work.

I still want to outrun heredity, but I will listen to the doctor and do as I’m told. Otherwise I may not be out there running at all. And then what in the world would I do to amaze myself?

Edit: in case it wasn't clear, I'm absolutely doing what the doc says. Yoga (with modifications) this morning instead of running. My aquajogger arrives today, and tomorrow I will be jogging in the pool. Wish me luck.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Longevity and arthritis runs in my Dad's family. I was diagnosed with it in my 30s and used a cane. Had hip replacements in my 50s. One day when I was walking, a runner passed me. I had the insane urge to pick up the pace and run, even though walking was slow and at times difficult. Is there a runner inside everyone?
    Hope your knee is being more agreeable now.
    1979 days ago
    Here is hoping the knee is better and you are back on top!
    2274 days ago
    Well Dee---It amazes me what we live with---and even get thru it ------You are doing well so keep it up!-Lynda
    2274 days ago
    I successfully ran half marathons and shorter races for 10 years after I was diagnosed with RA. I stopped running & started walking for weeks, when I had a flare up and then trained again for running when it cooled down.

    But last year I had to admit I am now starting to hurt some of the joints. So i looked and found Golf to be an alternative that works for me. Walking takes too much time & is too boring (yeah, I know has something to do with my pride....), but golf gives me the km I crave and a good arm & lower back work out at the same time.
    Running shorter distance was not an option, when i realized I would try and add km.
    2276 days ago
    As one who deals with arthritis and has been told not to run, I have settled for walking. I have a walking pace that is faster than some people jog and have found completing 1/2 marathons to be fun. Although I cannot achieve the levels of runners, the constant challenge to beat my previous time keeps me moving and trying. Listen to your doctor and keep on trying. You will get past the minor stumbles and move ahead. Good luck with this.
    2342 days ago
    These pains are usually temporary---but--they sure cramp our style in an exercise program----Lordy Be!---Ive had pains everywhere!==Lynda
    2342 days ago
    The aqua-jogging sounds like a great solution!

    I, for one, considered getting an AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill, but if I shelled out $25K, I would have to take appointments to pay it off. These seem to be standard equipment at rehab hospitals, so is there any way you can get a gig with perks at one of those?
    2352 days ago
    Oops! I posted the comment on your main page before I read this blog. DANG! You sound like a more advanced version of myself. By advanced, I mean more experienced in running and smarter when it comes to listening to the doctor. ha ha Ohhhh, I so know the feeling of being told "running is certainly not the best thing for your arthritic knees and ankles."
    2362 days ago
  • DEE797
    Hope resting and therapy helps you to heal quickly. HUGS!
    2375 days ago
    And this too shall pass. No, we don't like to be told to rest but there is a great deal of wisdom in your last paragraph and as runners, we do know how to follow training plans, we understand the importance of each task. So, this is just another aspect of your training plan...aqua jogger....great...modified yoga, wonderful....proper exercises to strengthen the supporting ligaments and muscles...very smart. You just may come out of this a better runner!

    Keep looking for the silver lining in the clouds that come our way.
    2376 days ago
    Dee, you need to keep a pro-active attitude and do not let this demotivate you. There are so many things you can do for your body to fight inflation, lesson the effects of arthritis. I left you a link on the galloway wall. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ikI
    d4l68iVA. Take a look at what Vijay Vad MD has to offer. He has a very encouraging book out on Arthritis.

    Did you talk to your Acupuncturist about the pain?

    I hope it is better soon.

    2388 days ago
  • DAISY443
    The knee strengthening exercises are great, Although I am not a runner, I sometimes have to do them just to keep walking! Take care!
    2388 days ago
  • LIS193
    2388 days ago
    Ah, ain't that the truth?

    I have had osteoarthritis since I was 38. Tried to fight it but it's always won. I don't really bother now. Gentle exercise is fine but I can't even do my favourite any more - walking - my feet start hurting - not the bottoms but the top and ankle areas.

    Now I've just been diagnosed with asthma - my mum had that for 50 years before she died (at nearly 90). She also had osteoarthritis, as did my Granny. I sometimes feel like I'm turning into my mum!

    I admire your fighting spirit - keep it up!
    2389 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/12/2014 4:28:39 PM
    I wish you luck, determination, patience and wisdom.
    2389 days ago
    bummer. hang in there! defy it!
    2389 days ago
    They say that to be an elite athlete you must "choose your parents well."
    Mine gave me "difficult feet."

    I'm a firm believer in knee strengthening exercises and I do them every morning as advised by my ortho guy. I've also worn custom "industrial strength" orthotics for 20 years.

    Rehab, rest, relax and come back stronger. Good luck!
    2389 days ago
  • no profile photo CD14815535
    You took a cortisone shot in the knee? You are a tough lady! I hear you about the heredity issue. *sigh* Sorry to hear about the arthritis, and I know how an injury/issue can take you out of the game both mentally and physically. Hoping you can get back on track very soon. The thoughts on arthritis have changed dramatically over the years--exercise is now favored for the long haul, but I'm not sure about the repetitive motions of long distance running--maybe shorter distances? P.S. I'm with you about your doc--he doesn't get it. "Wasn't built to be a marathoner"? Who is he thinking of? Can only Meb Keflezighi types run marathons? I think not.
    2389 days ago
  • no profile photo CD6329775
    Big HUGS Dee....
    I sure hear what you are saying..... for, me it is trying to outrun heredity and the effects of aging.

    You are one AMAZING woman!
    2389 days ago
    I wish you a fast and complete recovery.
    No running for 3 weeks is less danger - less fun too, and you will never know what would have happened if you did run, but I think this is the best possible decision at this time.

    I may be a hypochondriac, but I prefer to not run for a while when there is anything wrong with my feet or knees.
    2389 days ago
    Cortisone is an amazing thing. I pray the PT helps and that you're able to get back to doing what you love in due time. You're not wimping out, you're being wise.
    2390 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/12/2014 3:40:40 AM
    hope you are feeling better soon… emoticon
    2390 days ago
  • DEB62BIE62
    Sometimes we know our bodies better than the doctors. Do what is best for you. Listen also. Hard to know what to do. Take care of yourself.
    2390 days ago
    I'm glad the shot helped. I hope you are able to figure out a way to continue to enjoy running safely.
    2390 days ago
    I have arthritis too and am not allowed to run but I do a lot of walking. I hope you have a speedy recovery!
    2390 days ago
    You may not be able to outrun heredity but maybe you just need to make sure it doesn't outrun you. Perhaps by replacing "not wimping out" as primary motivation with smart longer term choices? There are many ways to be strong and to keep running.
    2390 days ago

    Comment edited on: 7/11/2014 4:56:22 PM
    I hear you! I am the same way. I am glad the shot worked!!
    2390 days ago
  • MJRVIC2000
    Amazing! God Bless YOU! Vic.
    2390 days ago
    2390 days ago
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