My shoulder hurts everytime I swim, has been for 2 weeks now. I knew it was because of overuse and the ridiculous increase in volume in a weekly basis. I consulted a masters swimming coach who said that for a non professional swimmer, there's nothing bad or wrong with my strokes. I just lack the muscle strength that resulted in my shoulder and everything else trying to compensate.
I have been running for 2 weeks now. Nothing serious, 5k maximum. Today after being frustrated with yesterday's lack of training I went for a run and what do you know after only 2km my knees started to feel the pain. At that point I had no idea whether I was imagining the burn because of something called a post recovery trauma, or the pain really happened. But I stopped anyways.
I went to the doctor, and this is really frustrating for me to write but the knee injury is present again and my left shoulder is also injured - tendonitis. The doctor was appalled since my knees were pretty solid the last time we had them checked. He came back to the same theory: my legs just aren't built for running. They're genetically displaced a little bit at the knees and too thin to support my upper body yada yada yada. The same theory goes to my shoulder - too thin, too weak to power through.
And strength training could bulk up my muscles a little bit but they could overpower my joints which will result in more bad joint injuries. Yahoo. "Basically," said my doctor, "you're built for the wrong sport." All these three sports requires the person to have the right muscular strength. Sure Kenyans breed lean runners BUT they don't have a pair of displaced knees. He said that if I was a competitive gymnast, or a professional dancer, I would have no such problems or injuries. My body is more likely to adapt to those sports. And, he added hesitantly, my future as a competitive 'triathlete' will have to end, if I want to be injury free until old age.
You know, at this point, I am somewhat relieved to be hearing those words. Don't get me wrong, the news is devastating but at the agony I went through last two weeks (I was unable to move my left arm if it weren't for the painkiller - arcoxia 120mg) plus the last 6 months of knee pain plus the frustration of missing out on running I am just damn fricking relieved to be given a way out of this mental torture.
Mental torture of unbearable knee pain, then missing running times, then boring recovery, then phobia of starting to run again, then the demotivation to gain my running mileage, and then the forever worrying of injury coming back.
right now, I do not know the way forward and where I stand. I might just give this whole issue a week's rest, take a chill pill. Join my dad gardening.
Energizer Night Race will be the first race I will be running in 2010. It will also be my last, for the time being. I plan to make it the best goddamn run ever. See you guys there and don't forget to say hello ok.
I end this post with one of my favorite quotes ever by Isak Dinesen:
“The cure for anything is salt water - sweat, tears, or the sea”