Gas station without pumps

2018 June 17

Taking a break from jogging

Filed under: Uncategorized — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 14:42
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As I mentioned in Starting jogging and Twenty-ninth weight progress report, I started jogging again after about a 40-year hiatus. Initially, things were going pretty well, and I was increasing the distance gradually, with only minor aches as I stretched out muscles that had not been used much lately.

As expected, my speed dropped as my distance increased, until I was running at a pace of about 9:30 per mile.

Astute readers may note that the running log ends on June 13, but today is June 17, and they may wonder why the long break.

The answer is simple—pain near the left knee. The minor aches in the muscles subsided in the first week, but a tender spot developed on my tibia, just below the left knee on the inside, and started getting worse rather than better. For a couple of days I also had exercise-induced edema in left leg (my foot swelled up and my weight went up by 4 pounds in two days), but that resolved itself in a day or two. I’ve done a little web research, and I think that what I’ve got is pes aserine bursitis or pes aserine tendinitis, based on where the tender spots are.

The standard treatment for any of the knee injuries I might have is rest, ice, elevation, and NSAIDs. So I’ve been resting the leg, grading on the couch with my foot propped up, and taking ibuprofen. I am not willing to ice the knee, though, as there is no swelling near the tender spot (and hasn’t been) and I have always found icing tendinitis to be acutely painful with no residual benefits for me. (Many years ago I had tendinitis or ulnar tunnel syndrome from a bad typing position, which took a long time to heal.)

This week I’ve found walking a bit uncomfortable, but not acutely painful, but bicycling on the recumbent bike seems to reduce the discomfort (probably from improved circulation without stressing the tendon).

I’m going to wait until the tenderness is gone before running again, which may take a week or a month. I’ll also start over with short distances, better shoes, and a softer running surface. This means it is unlikely that I’ll be up to Bike Santa Cruz County’s  12km run on 26 August 2018, but it is more important to me that I don’t make the minor injury worse.


  1. Old age sucks. Ibuprofen before the run, ibuprofen after the run, heat on some places, ice on others, stretching things that do not want to stretch anymore and so on. If your university has a PT program you could wander down there and ask what would help with the tender spot. The usual answer involves getting younger.

    Comment by gflint — 2018 June 18 @ 07:17 | Reply

    • No, we don’t have a physical therapy program at UCSC (there may be some PTs for the athletes, though I don’t think so, as the students only voted for an athletic fee this past year, and it was all spent on coach salaries and travel, I think).

      If the problem does not get better in a week or so, or gets significantly worse, I’ll make an appointment with a sports medicine doctor. There are 4 (3 accepting new patients) in the Santa Cruz branch of Palo Alto Medical Foundation. I opted for the cheap health insurance this year, so I don’t need a referral, but I have to pay the full amount until I reach the deductible, so it would be a fairly expensive visit with the probable outcome that they would either agree with my self-diagnosis and self-treatment or order a bunch of expensive tests. So I’m waiting a bit before going that route.

      One of the bigger problems with getting old is that NSAIDs (aspirin and ibuprofen) have greatly increased chances of serious side-effects as you age (like stomach bleeding), so you don’t want to lean on them too heavily for too long.

      Comment by gasstationwithoutpumps — 2018 June 18 @ 19:27 | Reply

  2. […] a three-week break to let my tendons and bursæ heal (see Taking a break from jogging), I started jogging again today, […]

    Pingback by Resuming jogging | Gas station without pumps — 2018 July 4 @ 20:16 | Reply

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