Knee pain is a quirky, stupid, and aggravating thing!
Sometimes the waiting game doesn't pay off, some times it does. This time it turned out to be the waiting game that paid off. I waited until the pain was a memory and started again, first 4 miles, no pain. 6 miles, no pain. Another 6 miles and a little warning pain. ARRRG!
Frosted Flakes fortified with Essential Insights!
Then came the fateful Sunday morning, I wanted to get a run in before church, it was a foggy, icy, frosty, cold November morning. You could tell the sun had grudgingly rose by the slightly less dark 50 meter circle of world the fog permitted you to see. The thermometer in my truck read 27 but the ashpalt running trail appeared only slightly damp I'd have to test it, but the path did not look to slick. I was running a 5 mile course Auburn to Kent and back. The start of a run in always a time to check out your body - before I get started I usually stretch out Achilles, but since I'm not going too fast I let the beginning of the run serve as warm up. The trail is not slick at all, but I notice white patches of frost in the distance. there is no chance of measurable precipitation, but the occasional flake falls through the fog, condensing in the 500-1000 feet of fog above my head. I hit the white patches of trail carefully, not too slippery. I see other prints in the frost trail off ahead of me. I wasn't the first one out? wow, early runner! At least there's only one set of prints, I feel like less of a slacker. Crossing the train tracks just past 277th I exercise extreme caution, the hardened rubber plates dividing the track are slick!
The run feels good, but I'm starting to feel the tell tale twinge in my right knee as I'm crossing the green river bridge - I'm being really careful as the bridge was covered in a thick coasting of frost. The frost is pretty much covering the trail - I take this time to critique the preceding runners tracks - great form, straight steps, but the stride is way long, either he's 8'5" or he's setting himself up for problems, or he's sprinting the whole way.
I reach the turn around at Willis and head back. My knee is telling me it's hurting, but not to intensely. as I look back across the path to the now two sets of tracks in the frost. My stride is an easy 8-10 inches shorter, then EUREKA!!!!!!
You Run Like a Penguin!
My stride may be perfect for maintaining the proper cadence ( 180 steps per minute) but I'm running like a PENGUIN! I just figured out why the inside on my right knee is hurting - GAS PEDAL FOOT! While you are driving, your right heel tends to sit between your brake pedal and the accelerator but the top of your foot rests off at an angle - over time that becomes an accustomed rest position for the foot, and when you are running, if you maintain that position the end of your right stride puts additional pressure on the front inside of your knee joint.
The rest of the run I concentrated on the now unnatural feel of straight in line footfalls, it felt wierd, but NO MORE PAIN!