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Joint injuries from running

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Postby EastcoastMike » Wed Oct 14, 2009 2:37 am

Mark Straub wrote:After running hard (8 miles yesterday, 5x1200's, 3x300's today) two days in a row, I am starting to have these involuntary knee spasms randomly when I walk, I don't like it. They don't hurt, but I lose control of my knee for a split second. Anyone know what's happening?

-Mark


Dude!

Just chill out a little bit if things are hurting or not feeling normal. Listen to your body.
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Postby foweyman » Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:46 am

Mark Straub wrote:After running hard (8 miles yesterday, 5x1200's, 3x300's today) two days in a row, I am starting to have these involuntary knee spasms randomly when I walk, I don't like it. They don't hurt, but I lose control of my knee for a split second. Anyone know what's happening?

-Mark


Your knee isn't spasming because a joint doesn't spasm. I'm guessing that it's the vastus medialis muscle, just above the front, inside of the knee, or perhaps more of your quads are also involved. Spasms occur in heavily used muscles. Even at your age, when you recover more quickly than us old folks, many top coaches recommend alternating hard and easy days so that you can complete the recovery phase of stress-recover improvement cycle.
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Postby Chris » Thu Oct 15, 2009 7:25 pm

John Duffield wrote:The barefoot running would be on a treadmill?

At the gyms in Thailand they required me to run barefoot on the treads. I didn't do enough of it to notice the difference but I think I'll try it here.

Mark says he's running almost exclusively on concrete. Might be a big part of the problem right there.


I run in Vibram FiveFingers outside. Usually late at night on a golf course. Good grass and you can get a long run (3-5 miles) without doing laps of a soccer field, etc. Another good place for grass running is complex of athletic fields.

I'm just now starting to run a little more on pavement and dirt trails. The FiveFingers are nice because they protect your feet from sharp rocks, glass, etc.

I think you're right about Mark running exclusively on concrete. That's a pretty harsh surface for all your running...
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Postby seanpeckham » Thu Oct 22, 2009 9:57 pm

I have the Five Fingers (to increase the mileage-to-blister ratio and to deal with the hazards of certain surfaces, and just to freak people out), but also run barefoot as well. I don't have convenient access to grass I can trust not to be hiding scary stuff in it, and feel that replacing one crutch for another - the cushioning of the shoe with the cushioning of the ground - is partially defeating the purpose anyway, so I do my barefooting on pavement. I do my longer distances in shoes because keeping the weight off my heels as is necessary without the padding makes my calves give out after 2-5 miles depending on how fresh i am and how successfully i conserve energy though better form, though that threshold is increasing with time. And my stride in shoes is now pretty much the same as it is barefoot.

I'm not totally anti-orthotic or anti-high-tech-shoes, but i think they are generally best considered as crutches - transitional aids (I'm not qualified to comment on their presumed applicability to a small minority of people who may be diagnosed with some specific medical condition that makes them necessary). The exclusive emphasis by shoe companies and a lot of doctors on pronation as the root of all evil and on their particular products as the only way to prevent over-pronation strikes me as virtually a scam; humans have been distance-running for millions of years before this stuff existed. There's no substitute for adequate form and conditioning.

Barefooting is not a panacea and can cause new injuries if you don't ease into it, as most people's feet and lower legs are probably atrophied from a lifetime of wearing shoes. But i've found it not only appeals to my inner purist, but for me personally has been an excellent catalyst to revamping my running form, learning to listen to my body, and, once i had taken the impact off my knees so that i actually could run at all, getting myself a deeper practical education on technique, exercise physiology, anatomy, and training methodology so that i can hopefully run harder, farther, and have more fun in the mountains. Plus, "Born to Run" is just a fun book to read.

BTW, i've gone from being winded and my knees giving out in 1/2 mile 4 months ago, to a personal best half-marathon last weekend. My injuries aren't entirely gone, but they're getting more manageable and will hopefully be gone before too much longer.
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Postby fossana » Thu Oct 22, 2009 11:13 pm

mikehensley wrote:The injuries you describe are all overuse injuries. If you're only running 35 miles per week, then I'd say you're running them too fast. You should be doing 60-70% of your miles at a conversational pace that, frankly, doesn't seem fast enough to be worthwhile. You ought to be able to catch your breath immediately after running. If you're winded at the end, you're running too fast.

With the other miles, you can do some speed work or a long run - but keep most of your miles very, very slow. I run my easy miles at a 10:30/mile pace.


I don't do speed work, but I do run hills 3 times a week (5-8 miles at 11-12 min/mile pace) with a longer run or hike on the weekends if I'm not climbing. My regular routes have a steady climb for half the route. It's done wonders for my trail pace, more so than when I was putting in 50-70 trail miles a week for ultra training. Plus it's kept my chronic running injuries in check.
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Postby battledome » Tue Oct 27, 2009 7:10 pm

fossana wrote:
mikehensley wrote:The injuries you describe are all overuse injuries. If you're only running 35 miles per week, then I'd say you're running them too fast. You should be doing 60-70% of your miles at a conversational pace that, frankly, doesn't seem fast enough to be worthwhile. You ought to be able to catch your breath immediately after running. If you're winded at the end, you're running too fast.

With the other miles, you can do some speed work or a long run - but keep most of your miles very, very slow. I run my easy miles at a 10:30/mile pace.


I don't do speed work, but I do run hills 3 times a week (5-8 miles at 11-12 min/mile pace) with a longer run or hike on the weekends if I'm not climbing. My regular routes have a steady climb for half the route. It's done wonders for my trail pace, more so than when I was putting in 50-70 trail miles a week for ultra training. Plus it's kept my chronic running injuries in check.


+1 Also good advice
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Postby Mark Straub » Wed Oct 28, 2009 12:19 am

Season's over- I started to feel a lot better towards the end, I took it back a little if I felt the group was going too fast. (I ended up passing most of them in the races anyway- maybe training a little lighter is the answer.)

My coach has a relentless attitude on how everyone can be fast if they want to. I don't buy into it. I will train this winter, spring and summer, but not brutally. I'm going to explore some new running areas on my own, I know of a couple places around my house where I might be able to find some soft terrain, and only a mile or so of asphalt to approach it.

A lot of the advice on this thread has been very helpful to me, and I have taken it to heart.

By the way, new PR on my final 5K! I got a 19:40!

-Mark
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Postby Alpynisto » Wed Dec 02, 2009 6:00 pm

New research shows that running is indeed bad for the knees and leads to arthritis.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 084710.htm

Another reason to ride bikes.
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Postby bird » Wed Dec 02, 2009 7:28 pm

Alpynisto wrote:New research shows that running is indeed bad for the knees and leads to arthritis.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 084710.htm

Another reason to ride bikes.

I for one would not call that study definitive by any stretch.
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Postby BeDrinkable » Wed Dec 02, 2009 7:49 pm

Alpynisto wrote:Another reason to ride bikes.

ExcitableBoy already covered this two pages back, but some people are just not designed to run. I do it in the winter when cycling is not feasible, but never more than twice a week. Like the OP, I ran track/cross country when I was younger and suffered through persistent injuries that only healed during the off-season.
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Postby Alpynisto » Wed Dec 02, 2009 8:05 pm

bird wrote:I for one would not call that study definitive by any stretch.


Of course not, no single study can ever be conclusive. But CrossNutters don't need no stinkin' science so don't let an N of 236 deter you from anything. :roll:
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Postby ksolem » Wed Dec 02, 2009 8:15 pm

Has anyone seen the book "Chi Running" by Danny Dryer?

This book is encouraging me to take up running again after a long layoff. It's worth a serious look.
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Postby fossana » Wed Dec 02, 2009 8:27 pm

ksolem wrote:Has anyone seen the book "Chi Running" by Danny Dryer?

This book is encouraging me to take up running again after a long layoff. It's worth a serious look.


I've heard of quite a few running injuries (meniscus tears, etc.) related to Chi Running. Be careful.
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Postby bird » Wed Dec 02, 2009 8:31 pm

ksolem wrote:Has anyone seen the book "Chi Running" by Danny Dryer?

This book is encouraging me to take up running again after a long layoff. It's worth a serious look.

I've heard of many people who can run again by following chi or pose running. Let us know how it goes...
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