Yesterday I had my first appointment with Jared at Orthopedic Associates Physical Therapy Center to finally have an evaluation for this knee pain. I figured after 25 days it was time to bring in the professionals!
I have heard great things about Jared from fellow runners and athletes. I was impressed. He was very pleasant and being a runner turned triathlete himself, I trusted what he had to say. As a bonus we even had a very engaging conversation about bikes and his new Cervelo P3!!
|OA Performance Center|
Now I am not a doctor, but I play one on TV.
Or is that I played doctor??
Or is it I have played with doctors?
Hmmm. It's one of those.
Anyway, my diagnosis of patellofemoral pain syndrome was spot on.
The good news? Jared said that this is an easy fix. The PFPS could have been caused by numerous issues-running in the Kinvara's (not a great shoe for me because of my pronation), running facing traffic constantly with the slope of the road and/or my own form issues.
Some causes of PFPS are weak quads and this is certainly not the case here; he said my quads were really strong and my VMO's were strong as well but we are going to work on building strength in the glutes and hips to bring balance.
I have some stretching & strengthening exercises to do, I need to do some marathon stick rolling on my quads and just above the patella, and I have some running drills to work on. I should be good as new soon!
Then it was time to hop on the treadmill and run. Jared brought out the camera and took some wonderful footage of my running.
The not so good news? I have some biomechanical issues to correct. I am heel striking and this is making me bounce UP and not move forward-which is also wasted energy.
I need to shorten my stride and increase my cadence. So I am going to be running with a metronome to get my cadence up to 184. No rockin' tunes for a bit until I can retrain myself.
|Inside the PT office|
We did some stretching, squatting, rolling and then it was time to run with the new info he armed me with!
Then Jared hooked me up to this funky looking treadmill and strapped me into a belt suspended from a pole. And yes- I got a little nervous. He then asked me to lean forward and once the belt started moving to start running. He then got the metronome going and I just ran. Then once I got the proper body position down it was off to the indoor track with my metronome and more running.
I am actually quite pleased with how the visit went. I have never had a gait analyses or even any kind of run coaching; it is wonderful to get some feedback on how I can improve as a runner! Jared also said that with these changes, we can easily shave a couple minutes off my 5k time. Combine that with losing 10lbs or so, I am hoping to beat the snot out of my Dad's PR (21:40) this summer.
So the next couple weeks will be focused on changing my run form and running pain free!