In 2001 I stopped jogging altogether due significant stiffness and pain I was experiencing at a point on the inside of both knees. But after an eight-year layoff from jogging my knees somehow rejuvenated allowing me to jog again.
I have always worked out and began jogging back in college as part of my cardio exercise. Although never a serious runner I managed to keep jogging as a regular part of my fitness routine for decades along with biking and resistance training. Whenever I traveled on business I always had my jogging shoes, headset for music, and jogging shorts in my suitcase. Most of my workouts were 2-5 miles through hills with some 10K’s thrown in along with a half marathon.
When I lived in San Rafael, CA back in the 1970’s-80’s I regularly ran the steep hills in my neighborhood. Uphill is great for the lungs, heart and legs but down hill, especially in the steep terrain I ran, was a killer on the knees. I always tracked my time trying to compete with myself so picking up a few seconds going fast downhill was part of my game plan. But I was younger and didn’t think ahead about the long-term impact of the downhill pounding on my knees.
DOWN HILL RUNNING CAUGHT UP WITH ME- ARTHROSCOPIC SURGERY
AFTER AN EIGHT YEAR HIATUS FROM JOGGING KNEES GOT BETTER
Late last year I began to notice the intermittent but persistent knee pain that plagued me for years had disappeared. So I dug out my old New Balance running shoes to check out my knees. To my great surprise I have been able to put jogging back into my workout routine without any pain whatsoever. This is great news because the EFX aerobic machines at the gym are not only boring but they are not as strenuous as running outdoors.
I’m still building up my running endurance but hope to put more distance into my workouts and plan to sign up for some 5K and 10K fun runs. In the mean time I run a course around Lake Mission Viejo as well as some ocean trails along the beach a few times a week in addition to the gym. May even return to San Francisco next spring for the infamous Bay to Breakers Race that I used to participate in every year.
I may never be able to keep up with my 21 year old son Mark who paces at 6:20 minute miles for long distances but at least I’ll be able to keep my abs at a 4-pack rather than a 2-pack! And if all goes well I might even consider skiing again!