Visited the physio today. She was brilliant - very down-to-earth but also very knowledgable and passionate about her job.
She backed up my theory that my knee is slightly mal-aligned and not tracking properly, causing some irritation and swelling. She used ultrasound, electric current and accupuncture to help bring the swelling down. She then looked at my muscle length and balance. Seems I have a more developed right quad than my left one and it also seems (and this was no shock) that I have very poor flexibility in both legs. So I have to start strectching properly. I have promised a 3 X 10 minute stretch of all the major leg muscles. She then taped up my knee in a better alignment and sent me on my way.
I have to go back next Thursday (27th) and am not allowed to run between now and then. I have also agreed not to cycle as this may exacerbate the problem. The only down-side to all of this (apart from not running for a week!) is that I'll miss the Chevin Chase race on Boxing Day. I am gutted about this. She did think that the Thames Path Ultra in a month is still possible. I imagine I'll have to think very carefully about the training and recovery for this one.
Overall I am pleased with the consultation today. I have been really worried all week that I have some kind of irreversible problem and that this is the beginning of the end of my running. A little meladramatic I know, but when something is that important to the quality of your life then it becomes very precious.
What this injury has done is remind me that I need to listen more carefully to my body and to learn to stretch.
Will probably be a bit quiet on the blog for a few days now with no running and Christmas nearly upon us. So Merry Christmas to all those kind souls who keep up-to-date with the training! I'll post again when something interesting happens (like I can run again!)