Monday, November 14, 2011

My duck feet and runner's knee

So as you may know I have been sidelined recently with a case of runner's knee. After my long run where I had to run with a sore knee for 2 miles so that I could get back to the van and pick up the boys my knee has been bugging me. I knew that I should just rest and so I have. Last friday (Nov 11th), my knee was feeling good and the weather was great out. A little warm, still no snow and my wonderful wife agreed to let me go out and run for a bit. I knew I wasn't going to go far, so I just chose to run around the lake close to our house. I wore my new Vibram Bikilas, which I love. I now wear either them or my KSO's all day long when I'm at home. I'd go barefoot at home but with 7 kids there are a lot of crumbs on the ground so that's not the best option. :)

Anyways it's about half a mile from our house to the lake. I ran there in my Bikilas and then took off my shoes.
Narrowly avoided getting pooped on by a flock of geese right after I took my shoes off. Yuck.
The path around the lake. Not a sunny day, but it was warm enough for barefoot running.
The path around the lake is just shy of 1 mile, so I was hoping to run around the lake twice and then head home. 3 miles still seems short, but good. About halfway around the lake though my left knee starts to hurt. Crap. My knee still isn't good. Resigned I put on my Bikilas and slowly headed back home as I didn't want to make things worse. Really getting frustrated at not being able to run more, but I can't force my knee to get better so I just have to rest more.

Then last night Robbie and I were talking about running. Figuring out what our next race should be, what our plans are for the upcoming year, etc. She then asked about my knee. I showed her where the pain was and she said that it sounded like Runner's Knee. And then we had an 'Aha!' moment. When I stand normally my feet are not parallel. My feet point out in a V. I always have done that and I'm sure that it's kinda like that when I run too.
Relaxed stance. I might point my toes out even more normally, I'm not sure.
I have heard that running barefoot will help your body to correct issues like that. I can imagine that trying to run barefoot with my feet turned out like that would make landing on my forefoot more dangerous. With my feet turned out landing on my forefoot would probably make me land a little harder on the little 4th and 5th metatarsals in my feet. These are not really designed for high impact and can lead to stress fractures. Going barefoot probably naturally causes me to correct for this and run with my feet more parallel. Maybe this is the cause of my pain. I'm going to be more mindful of how I sit, stand, walk and run to see if this helps my knee to feel better. I'm also going to do some Runner's knee stretches that we had found on Youtube.

I'll document how it goes. Hopefully the pain will go away and my relaxed standing posture will improve.



  1. Barefooting will teach you a lot!!! It has helped to correct my sway back even!

  2. Good luck with your knee. Get better and we will go for a run.

  3. Thanks. So far so good. I'm going to post an update already. Paul, I think I'll be good for next week. I'll see you then.