The Dreaded Runner’s Knee

13th May 2013

Remember that whole resolution to take things a bit slower in 2013? The one that I *thought* I was conquering just a few months ago? I have a confession to make, I’m apparently doing it all wrong. Or so says my body.

Last week, on an otherwise bea-u-ti-ful run through Central Park during a quick business trip to NYC, it hit me, the dreaded, often whispered about pain just to the side of the kneecap, also known as runner’s knee. Until this point, my running career has been largely injury free. I’ve learned how to better take care of my body, train properly and as a result i’ve made it hundreds of miles without too many setbacks.

How could one *not* want to run here?

How could one *not* want to run here?

Then, around mile two, as I floated past Strawberry Fields, someone took a sledgehammer to the outside of my knee, and that all too well known searing pain found its way up my leg. Runner’s knee had finally caught up with me and reared its ugly head.

The cure? (thanks to futile Google searches in hopes of some forgotten treatment), ice. And ibuprofen. And REST. Oh the rest, we’re just not quite on the same page, rest and I.

The good news? Another likely culprit of this little setback is a lack of strength training. While I’d like to tell you that my bottom half is rock solid muscle, it’s not, running does many things for me, and building the right types of muscle is just not one of them. I’ve known for some time that I should be spending more time strengthening my hips, quads and hamstrings, and now I have the perfect excuse.

If an injury is the excuse, The Nike Training Club app is the solution. I’m not much of a gym fan, so in-living room workouts work well for me. The app provides some fantastic workouts for as few as 15 minutes, all targeted to various body parts and brought to you by Nike athletes. Combine this with AirPlay over the Apple TV and it’s almost as if I have a personal trainer in the room with me.

Here are a few of my favorite low-impact exercises so far (all courteous of the ever so lovely Gabby Douglas, who can also be found within the app):

Side planks with leg lifts:


Side leg circles: 20130513-213224.jpg
Straight leg flutters:


So there you have it,  this is the look of my next week and beyond. With a little help from Gabby and others, I’m hoping to be back outside in no time. In the meantime, I’ll be here with my phone and a bag a frozen peas on my leg.

0 thoughts on “The Dreaded Runner’s Knee

  1. Abby @ Levels Food and Fitness

    Every runner dreads that moment…I’m sorry to hear about your injury but it’s great that you realize you need rest! Rest is pretty tough for me, too…I love being as active as possible, but sometimes a few days of solid rest can do wonders for the body. Hoping that your knee heals soon! 🙂

  2. Kaitlyn Dennihy

    Thanks Abby! Definitely nothing serious, but it’s those little nagging injuries that bother us the most. Now if only I could bring my self to your training levels 🙂 Congrats again on the marathon!

  3. Jon Chew

    Just stumbled upon your blog. Sorry to hear about the runner’s knee. Hope it’s better now. I better start on my own strength training too!

  4. Kaitlyn Dennihy

    Thanks Jon! It took about eight weeks to get over completely, with lots of cross training in-between, so hopefully I’m back on the right track! Good luck with training of your own!