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January 2, 2021
oh a new year again

Well I failed at writing more during the pandemic. Shit.

I made a bunch of youtube videos w/ super8, including a tutorial which might be useful to some people:

WARNING - DO NOT READ -- boring personal health/running related story follows. This is here for my own future reference, mainly:
In May of last year I was running a lot, laps on the roof and outside. I wasn't bicycling much. My knee started feeling weird and not really working right. Normally I'd go to the chiropractor, but with the pandemic I was avoiding things like that. So I tried massaging all of the bits around the knee, to try to loosen it all up. Bad move. I soon discovered that I had completely pissed off a bursa, which is a bad idea. That made it hurt to walk. By July I could run again, a little, but then I was getting a lot of pain around the bursa. More time off. Some bike rides, maybe not enough. In August I saw my doctor, and then saw an orthopedist. Got an MRI. MRI showed I had a torn meniscus (complex tear, medial horn, something like that). Ortho recommended surgery to clean it up. Finally went to the chiro, who was helpful. At some point I remember him applying pressure on the lateral side of the knee, pushing inward, and it popping a bit and then feeling better after it. Read a study about knee surgeries for this type of thing and how the differences of outcome were hard to measure between surgery and sham surgery. Read that MRIs can tell you about the tears, but there's no way to know whether they are a month old or 10 years old. I had a few things as a teenager that seem like must have done damage. Anyway, I was still having that bursa pain, but then found some crosswise friction massage on the tendon helped it almost immediately. After that I was able to run on and off in September to October. By November 6th I went to Forest Park and did 3 laps on the trails, which was great, but definitely used different muscles and motions vs road running. After that there was some soreness in the knee which felt deep, but after a day off I was able to start running again every day, with low miles at first, and November 7 until December 27 I ran every day with overall mileage increasing. Things didn't feel great all of the time but mostly they were OK. Anyway then on December 27, and maybe earlier but I ignored it, biomechanically things started going wrong. And after the Dec 27 run, the pain returned. A week has gone by since then, it's gradually been getting better, bike rides definitely help. (I just pushed from the lateral side on the knee and popped and that may have helped too, we'll see). So my current theory is that when I get tired enough and the right muscles weak enough, the knee's form changes such that it isn't operating correctly, which causes pain. Maybe I can adjust it back when needed, and strengthen the muscles to keep it working right? We'll see... So for now I've made myself a winter plan, which involves trying to bicycle ever day, not running more than 5 miles a day, not running more than 30 miles a week, and not doing speedwork. I'm putting that here so that I don't forget.
TL;DR: boring paragraph

Also those last Not Vampires NINJAM tracks were pretty fun! Favorites include Track 4 starting around 7:00 and Track 5 around 2:00

Posted by Tale on Sun 03 Jan 2021 at 06:10 from 77.170.68.x
Ah don't read, right... Anyway, I'm sorry to hear about your knee, and I hope it will get better in time. And else I guess you can always reconsider surgery sometime in the future.

Posted by Justin on Sun 03 Jan 2021 at 17:19 from 71.167.52.x
heh thanks... I think it'll all be OK, just the challenges of aging...

Posted by Gio on Fri 15 Jan 2021 at 16:00 from 94.70.31.x
Sorry to hear about that, I wish you well. What I learned from my own experience is that a middle aged man should probably exercise in moderation or to put it otherwise in accordance to his own strength probably never in excess. As the ancient Greek saying goes ``Pan metron ariston'' (Everything in moderation).

Posted by Martin on Mon 01 Feb 2021 at 06:52 from 91.50.109.x
There is a youtube channel about stretching excercises to combat pains caused by monotone movements or postures. Their theory is that fascia tissue foreshortens from excercise and that leads to excessive pressure on the joints, which causes the pain. So where you talk about strengthening certain muscles, they'd recommend stretching the opposing muscles instead. Search on youtube for "Liebscher & Bracht – The Pain Specialists" to find their channel. The TL;DR version is: stretch the muscles you use most during running every day, and hold each stretch for at least 90 seconds, then ease out of it very slowly. It's supposed to hurt a little bit, but not so much that you couldn't smile anymore while doing it. I've had great results from this with fixing tendonitis in my arm and reducing some thumb joint pain. Maybe it can help you too? If it works, it should feel better fairly quickly, but of course your mileage may vary. And especially since you have prior injuries, maybe check in with your orthopedist first.
Good luck and get well soon!

Posted by Justin on Tue 02 Feb 2021 at 12:18 from 71.167.52.x
Thanks Martin, that's pretty consistent with my understanding (and what my Chiropractor has said)... the Orthopedist seemed less interested in that, though.

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