Sports FAQ
Home / Running / Walking

Knee Mice + Marathon training. Good idea? Bad Idea?

channlluv2010-05-01 07:53:43 +0000 #1
Okay, so I visited super chiropractor Dr. Matt (the guy who saved me from shoulder surgery and has me swimming again) about the crackling sound in my knees when I do deep lunges. Actually, kind of shallow lunges, too. He called the noise knee mice and explained that my cartilage is in bad shape. He prescribed glucosamine, and if it doesn't improve, he'll start deep ultrasound and TENS on it in a couple of weeks.

Now, my question here today, because today you can register for the San Diego Rock & Roll Marathon at a discount, today only, is whether or not training for a marathon is just asking for knee-deep disaster down the road.

Literally. I've never been much of a runner, so this is all new to me. I can run, and according to my runner friend, I have a good natural form. I just don't do it. All that pounding just hasn't sounded like fun. But a bunch of my friends are signing up for this marathon and we'd all be training together.

But a Girl Power Goddess Experience isn't worth a lifetime of arthritis or something if all that running is just bad for my knees.

This is the next step on my road to triathlon training, too. If I can't run, I can't do triathlons, so I really want to. I'm just facing down the potential injuries here.

Help, please.

Roxy


mickchick2010-05-01 07:57:00 +0000 #2
I don't understand. Does it hurt when you run? Or crackle? Why not just stop doing the lunges if the noise bothers you and keep running? If you don't overtrain, are careful to stretch, etc., I don't see why you should continue to run if it doesn't hurt. Particularly if you have good form.

Did the chiropractor x-ray your knees? Did he diagnose this just on the crackling noise when you're doing lunges? I'm sure one of the PTs can weigh in here....
Trek4202010-05-01 08:08:34 +0000 #3
You can walk a tri depending on the distance. Admittedly probably not an IM distance unless you race-walk faster than some runners (and some race walkers do).

I'm planning a half-mary in March and I don't run at all.

Disclosure: no medical training or experience whatsoever but I do have horrid knees, really bad knees and joints. You might have something kinda floaty bits floating around in there, sometimes lodging where it causes a noise.

You could have arthritis and what you are hearing is bone on bone. Does it hurt?

IM very HO I don't think ultrasound will do much other than make it feel all nice and warm and make your chiro's reimbursement for treatment feel all nice and warm.

OTOH if the ultrasound makes you feel better to the extent that you can do the work to strengthen the joint then it's all good.

Glucosamine may help, so would strengthening and stretching the muscles around the knee. Take the stairs, do some hill work, see a PT not necessarily in that order.

Actually .... in reverse order.
OakLeaf2010-05-01 08:33:43 +0000 #4
Most marathons will allow you to switch your registration to the half-marathon if it turns out you can't do the full distance.

+1 on seeing a PT. Your chiro should be able to refer you. Ultrasound is great for getting swelling and inflammation out of muscles, but I'm not sure what good it does directly on joints. Make sure you're doing your myofascial release and hip strengthening work - a lot of chronic knee problems can be misalignment caused by trigger points mostly in the lateral muscles, and weakness in the hips.

IANAD, etc., etc... Good luck.
channlluv2010-05-01 08:51:35 +0000 #5
It hurts when I do lunges, but not always, and sometimes when I climb stairs. I have noticed that I've become cautious when climbing, favoring my left knee, especially. The noise does bother me, but the crackling itself doesn't really hurt, just the ligaments/tendons that move my body up and down in the lunge/stair climb itself.

I'm doing the Core Performance workouts and I'm entering week four. www.amazon.com/Core-...id=1260727508&sr=8-1 DH finished it and it really helped him change his body shape and improve his cycling power.

When Dr. Matt did some manipulation of my knee, he squeezed around my kneecap and that hurt, and he suggested there was some inflammation there. He wants me to ice my knees after every workout.

Trek, it's encouraging that you're running even with bad knees. I'm only 45. I don't want to have long-term knee problems that prohibit my getting around, much less riding or running or swimming. I'm having fun here.

Roxy
Wahine2010-05-01 10:01:58 +0000 #6
Quote:

Originally Posted by OakLeaf

Most marathons will allow you to switch your registration to the half-marathon if it turns out you can't do the full distance.

+1 on seeing a PT. Your chiro should be able to refer you. Ultrasound is great for getting swelling and inflammation out of muscles, but I'm not sure what good it does directly on joints. Make sure you're doing your myofascial release and hip strengthening work - a lot of chronic knee problems can be misalignment caused by trigger points mostly in the lateral muscles, and weakness in the hips.

IANAD, etc., etc... Good luck.

Bingo. You can always switch to a half and hip work, strengthening, stretching and myofascial release with a foam roller at home can do absolute wonders for this sort of thing. Orthotics are sometimes helpful too if you have badly fallen arches.

So I'd say sign up for the mary if it's what you want.

Personally, I would go with some shorter races first. You don't have to run a marathon to do Triathlon. Training for a marathon eats up a lot of time and if what you want to do is a Tri, it'll limit you're ability to put time into that. And, tri training is usually better for your joints overall due to the cross training involved.

Hope that helps.
KnottedYet2010-05-01 09:38:24 +0000 #7
Please no ultrasound to the joint. Ultrasound is worse than useless to joints. It causes cavitation in the synovial fluid. Little explosions that damage your cartilage. Also the US waves are reflected off the surface of the bone and cause superheating of the first thing they encounter next: the periosteum or the cartilage.

Please no TENS. TENS is for nerve pain, it gives the nerves electrical signals that flood out the pain signals they transmit. It is useless for a noisy joint.

Please give the glucosamine 3 months to take effect. Expecting it to make a difference in "a couple weeks" is premature. Glucosamine gives the body the raw materials it needs to fix cartilage, which is helpful if you don't have enough raw material in your system already. If you have an adequate diet, and the cartilage is normal (but noisy, like normal cartilage gets over the years) glucosamine won't change anything, even after 3 months.

Knees are noisy. It is their nature. They self-repair damage, but they remain noisy. They are especially noisy if you deep lunge or squat improperly (which most women do).

Knees are constantly repairing themselves. Retraining your muscles to keep the knee alignment and forces through the knees optimal at all times helps the knee repair keep up with the wear they experience. Knees are noisy. Even young folks have noisy knees. Knees constantly clean themselves, they "squeegee" out the fragments and cooties that float in the synovial fluid. It's normal.

Please see a PT to get your muscles and leg posture trained. Please see a PT to learn how to help the "squeegee" effect (usually knee extension with patient-applied overpressure either saggitally or with internal or external rotation does the trick, your PT can help you narrow it down) if you do have some large chunkie-bits adding to the noise.

If your knee isn't locking or collapsing or causing severe pain, then you just have normal noisy knees. But it wouldn't hurt to have a PT get your posture and muscle control up to snuff before your marathon. Irritation and occaisional twinges often come from poor posture and muscle control.
channlluv2010-05-01 09:14:06 +0000 #8
Wow, Knot, thank you.

I've got an appointment with my GP in early January to follow-up on my blood pressure and general well-being. I'll talk with her about getting a PT for my knees. Are there videos online of the proper lunge technique?

No TENS, no ultrasound on the knee. Gotcha.

I think I will stick to shorter distances for now. Let the goddesses run their goddess hearts out. I'm going to find my happy pace and stick to it.

Thank you!

Roxy

Reply

Name:
Content:


Other posts in this category