Boston Half Marathon 2010
This has been an emotional roller-coaster of Marathon training. After four years, I finally have a chance to run the New York City Marathon on Nov 7th. Started training in the spring. Despite some early foot issues, it was going pretty well. Then about 8 weeks ago, I started having severe knee pain. After an MRI, my Sports Medicine Specialist diagnosed a torn medial meniscus! “Your Marathon running days are over, Arun,” he proclaimed and strongly recommended I pull out of the NYC Marathon.
I was crushed. But NOT done!
Consulted with several other specialists and a few held out hope, “rest for a few weeks and see if it hurts.” Here’s what some NYC doctors recommended. Also started aggressive physical therapy. A cyst has formed associated with the torn meniscus, which was pressing on the pes anseris tendons on the inner side of the knee (sartorius, gracilis and semi tendinosus) causing tendonitis and pain.
The physical therapists understood my intense desire to run the NYC Marathon. They performed ultrasound and electrical stimulation on the tendons and the cyst; taught me various exercises to relieve imbalances and recommended I stop running for a few weeks.
Started “aqua running.” You use a floatation belt tethered to the wall in deep end of the pool and run in place without your feet touching the bottom. Extremely strenuous, utterly exhausting and supremely BORING! But with no impact, it helps healing.
After a week, knee swelling and pain had gone down and I jubilantly ran 2 miles! With therapy twice/week, I started doing long runs on weekends and regular pool running on weekdays. Took on 4, 9 and a 13 miler in quick succession. After every run, the knee would swell and I would ice it for hours! The therapist would curse and work on my knee.
So we went for the last 6 weeks, with the bare minimum you could get by with. This is how I came to lace up for this half marathon. I had NO goals, but only wanted to finish with my knees intact. I love this course and Fall is a great time to run in Boston.
Started pretty fast and at mile 5, I was running 8:30 pace. Was winded and realized I couldn’t sustain it through the hills in the second half. Pulled back slightly, but managed to keep the pace through the hills. Was hoping to pick-up the pace after mile 11, but then we enter Franklin Park zoo and are running on a narrow sandy trail, 2-3 abreast. No chance to speed here. A few more rolling hills and I enjoyed my run through the stadium to the finish. This is a challenging course, but it will be fun to train better and attack the hills. Want to PR here!
Yeah! The knee was swollen and the therapists just shook their heads. But the pain was much less and I knew I had one 20-mile run remaining. Did that this Saturday. It was very windy and in the 50’s, but otherwise a great day. I am surprised I ran as well as I did. After the run, I plonked in an ice bath for 30 minutes and my legs were frozen all evening. A sure way to kill the hurt.
Now, I’m on the taper and ready for NYC! Hope to do it!
Previous Marathons and Half-Marathons
- Marine Corps Marathon 2008
- Boston Half Marathon 2008
- Boston Half Marathon 2007
- Boston Marathon 2007
- Hyannis Half Marathon 2007
- Chicago Marathon 2006
- Boston Marathon 2006
- Boston’s Run to Remember Half Marathon 2006