3 weeks ago DD and I go on a quick bike ride. It was clear and windless. It's probably a bit cold too, I actually wear pants over my cycling shorts. We need to be outside on a bike so badly that we go despite the cold. My knee has been "acting up" so I take it pretty easy. Everything is good until the way back. We hit just the tiniest bit of a slope, a bit of a head wind and I drop way back. I actually beg DD to let me draft for the rest of the ride.
No stamina or endurance. My knee feels strangely weak and a little bit wobbly. When I stand up to pedal I feel SHARP pain. Not a good combination on my 2007 Inaugural Outdoor Bike Ride.
(Insert Wayne's World "funny, way back, remember when sound...dodooloodo....dodooloodooo...here)
Cut back to May last year. My knee was sore, swollen and would not bend past 90 degrees. Stairs were a bitch. Sleeping on my back or stomach was uncomfortable.....you get the idea, it's not a pretty.
I marched off to my orthopaedic "surgeon". We Xrayed, we MRI'd. Diagnosis was that I had arthritis under my patella and that was the cause of the pain and swelling. The course of action was to rest, let pain be my guide and all it would all eventually "go away".
I rest. I baby it. I ice it. Then I train during late summer and fall. DD and I complete El Tour de Tucson. Then we get the real training bug and start intervals with the evil Coach Troy in January. Somewhere in Jan or Feb, I do something to my knee. It swells up like some horrible alien sucking the life from what was formerly my knee. I stop training.
Time for a 2 nd Opinion. Lets just start by saying that Dr. Wayne is the bomb. I have a diagnosis I trust. I am getting physical therapy. My knee seems to be improving a tiny bit every day. What's really up with my knee? When I bend it, my patella ends up on the Outside the joint. So in other words, my knee cap is not "tracking" right.
I need something easy to do, something pain free. But I crave the sweat and endorphins of a tough work out. I remember my sweet, beat up but friendly mountain bike. We go for the same ride that was unsuccessful 3 weeks ago and it is a huge success. 10 miles today! The only pain is that of unused muscles in my legs and a few twinges on my "sit bones".
Sometimes a little change of scenery, a change of equipment, and some targeted therapy is all that you need to get rollin' again.