As mentioned in my previous posts, I got asked to do a half-marathon, and then started seriously training. Of course, Murphy always has a say in things like this. My second or third run at 15+ kms found me stopping with a fairly sharp, stabbing pain in my right knee. I do most of my training in the evening, so I figured that I had stepped on something and tweaked my knee a bit.

I took a break of about a week to allow the pain to go down, and then went out again. Once again, the pain showed up. By this time, it is the beginning of September, and the half-marathon is in a little over 3 weeks. I quickly ran through the causes in my mind. It wasn’t my shoes, as I had gotten new shoes about a month earlier, and they had about 75-100 kms in them.

So, I took to my Family Doctor and got her to take a look. She diagnosed me with Chondromalacia. Basically, it means that for whatever reason, my kneecap is tracking outside the path it is supposed to track. As a result, it is no longer cartilage on cartilage, but bone on cartilage. As a result, it is somewhat painful. The Dr referred me to a physiotherapist, whom I got an appointment to see the next week, as well as giving me a prescription for some strong anti-inflammatories.

My appointment was at Physio Outaouais, a local chain of private clinics that deals with, as the name implies, physiotherapy. I got my appointment the next week, and waited patiently.

Play time-passes music in your head

I walked over to the clinic, and saw the physiotherapist. She had be do some knee bends and heard the crackling in my knee. She did a couple more tests, and looked at how my legs hung down by having me lie with my legs and butt hanging off the end of a table. She then had me raise each knee to my chest and looked at how the other leg hung. She noted that when I brought my left leg up, my right knee would be off to the side and not in a straight line. She did some other tests involving twisting and turning, and confirmed the diagnosis.

She gave me a couple of things to do to improve things.

  1. A couple of stretches that will stretch the outside of my right thigh.
  2. Some exercises to strengthen my quads to keep the kneecap tracking properly
  3. K-tape, as well as instructions on how to tape my knee.

My knee-taping is what they call the Canadian H, based on it looking somewhat like the jersey symbol for the Montreal Canadiens hockey team. On my knee, it looks something like this:


Notice my hairy legs. Are they not awesome??

I went out for a short run later that week (thursday night, 10 km) to see if it worked. The combination seemed to work well. Only some mild soreness and no pain.

Next post – The half-marathon.