“The art of healing comes from nature, not from the physician. Therefore the physician must start from nature, with an open mind.”
Philipus Aureolus Paracelsus
Let me start by saying that my problem is not with the IT band...and that's a good thing. Two important things happened today to help me with me training.
First, I saw the dietitian and it seems that I'm not doing too badly with the food intake. However, I need to increase my proteins at lunch and my vegetables overall. Also, my snacks are not sufficient, it's not a fruit or some nuts, it should be both. She confirmed that chocolate milk was an excellent recovery drink and even the chocolate soy beverage does the job. Today, she mostly gathered information, but she will be giving me more of a plan next time...I think. One cool thing is that this dietitian is a runner and she gave me the name of a physiotherapy clinic that she got excellent results at, so...
Second, I got an appointment with the PT this afternoon and, according to Joseph (my PT), this is what is going on: He did lots of bending and twisting and tapping with both my knees and then he had me run on the treadmill both without and with my NEW shoes. I told him that the new shoes were the same brand and pretty much the same model (GT2140 to GT2150) as my old shoes. He explained that most companies increase the stability, the cushioning and sometimes even the arch on the newer version to justify the higher price. Can you see where this is going? He also said that my old shoes still had lots of wear in them. The really cool thing is...it seems that when I run barefeet, my running form is pretty close to perfect (his words). BUT, and this is a very important BUT, when I put my new shoes on and got on the treadmill, even I saw that my legs weren't as straight and my gait felt more awkward. Plus, a mild ache started in my knee.
The verdict: I have three small injuries, but nothing major. The three muscles that link up around the knee cap are inflammed because my new shoes have such a high arch, that they prevent me from landing naturally on my foot and I end up landing on the outside of my foot. Also, my knees tend to go in and almost rub together when I have my new shoes on. So, the knee cap does not stay where it should. He explained that I have a naturally high arch and that I don't need an arch in my shoe...I don't need the stability...and he doesn't feel I need all that cushioning either. He suggested I go back to my old shoes for now, which have a little less of all three, but he basically said that I was a good candidate for light trainers, racers or even vibrams eventually!! He also told me to run more often...yes, you read well, more often, but not as long. Basically, I am to run 6-7 days a week for now, but no more than 4-5K. The most important part of my homework, is that I have to make sure I am running 180 steps per minute (3 steps per second). Seems that when I put my shoes on, I have a harder time keeping a natural running rythm. I was okay barefoot, but I slowed down with my shoes on, which also affects the form. Of course, I asked if I should get some light trainers right away...but, apparently, it takes a while to make the transition (maybe 4-5 weeks) and he's not sure if now is a good idea, since I'm training for my first marathon. He did say that if I want to try, he will help me...and I'm very seriously considering it. For now, I can sometimes run barefoot on the treadmill for a bit :)
I can run and I did 4.5K today!
I wore my old running shoes and counted my steps...I would check my watch count to 90 and see if that was 30 seconds. At first I was too slow, then I started to get pretty close, sometimes a bit fast, but mostly good. It was quickly evident that this helped me with my form somehow. I also made sure to not land on the outside of my foot (if I didn't think about it, I felt mild pain immediately). So, no pain until about 3.5K and even then I could control it with my cadence and my form. Around 4K it was getting harder to control and I stopped at 4.5K.
I'll keep you posted...Cheers!