Injuries and new words

One of the facts of starting to work out, especially after decades of relative inactivity, is the fact of injury. Last Thursday I hurt my right knee. Now, I’ve been nursing the left knee for a while, so it’s no wonder the right knee was feeling some strain.

While doing a bit of light jogging to get an assessment of my cardio progress, I heard and felt this snapping/crunching sound in my right knee and the pain was a sudden 8/10.

Turns out, after a visit to my doctor’s office, that I have Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome, or Runner’s Knee. Very common, textbook example, as she said. Basically since my quads are not strong, it has difficulty keeping the knee cap in the groove it rides in on the femur. This time, it rode up on the ridge, doing some general tissue damage, and likely spraining the MCL. Despite the pretty intense pain, she said it was no big deal and that it would take 6 – 8 weeks to heal.

I am so very frustrated at this point. As noted earlier, this is the time I’ve finally gotten serious. Finally made exercise a vital part of my life, and here I’m sidelined after only 2 months. Now, granted, I plan to start back to the gym in the next day or so, working upper body and starting to strengthen my quads. If all goes well, I’ll get back on the bike, but I have no idea how well I’ll tolerate that at the present time.

The right knee is on the mend, however slow I feel the recovery is. It’s one of those injuries where if you push or prod on any given spot, there’s no specific pain. But, if I hold the knee in any one position for very long, the pressure begins to build, and the knee throbs. This wakes me up at night, despite the prescription meds. It’s not as bad as Thursday night, granted.

This is an excellent example of how to succeed in my mind. It reminds me of my writing career. Often we find long periods of success and growth, only to be hit by setbacks.

Writer’s block comes to mind. Or, the dreaded reject after reject from short story submissions, even though they are getting personal comments. It’s a point where frustration can set in, where an overwhelming sense of “it’s just not fair” can creep into our lives.

But, with working out, writing, playing music, art, or any worthwhile endeavor, there are going to be setbacks. A very wise man once told me…”Fair’s in August.” I try to remember that when the righteous indignation is building and I want to throw my toys and have a bit of a tantrum.

The reality is, this will pass. I will continue to heal, and work out, because I’m listening to my body, to my physical trainer, the physical therapist and my doctor. I’m eating healthier, sleeping better and feeling stronger than I have in years.

Last night I finished a new short story for an anthology I was invited to a couple of months ago. It felt excellent wrapping that story and getting it out to my first readers for comment. I’ll get it over to the editor in the next couple of days and enjoy that “having written” euphoria for a day or two.

And Thursday, I’ll go back to PT, and then to the gym that afternoon. I’ll do what I can and work my way forward another few steps on this long and wonderful road to better health.

Tonight I begin reading Honeyed Words (again) as the page proof portion of this novel life-cycle and over the weekend, I’ll start drafting the third Sarah Jane Beauhall novel.

Life is good, and as they do in Texas, I’ll take two steps forward and one step back. Life is a journey. We follow the roads we find with the best intention and a hopeful spirit. After all, what else can we do?

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  • I remember those tantrums! Sorry about the knee troubles. I have inherited Granny and Dad’s osteoarthritis. Not fun times!

  • If you still have the rowing machine, that might be ok. You don’t have the weight impacting on the knee, though the joint is obviously moving. Just a thought.

  • Yeah — I get it — take care of it until it heals. I failed to do that with my Achilles tendon and thus the surgery next week after three years of healing / damaging again.
    Just do upper body stuff and be happy you’re building muscle.
    After the knee heals, consider yoga. I plan to go back to it as an preventative technique if I ever get this &*^%$ healed!

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The wild ox; strength and power.


Creativity; words, music, and art.


The troll cross; wealth and prosperity.


The sun; energy, honor, guidance.


Personally earned or lucky wealth and prosperity.


The harvest; patience and promise.


The chariot; journey and travel.

Note: This is not the real book cover.