Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Tracking?


Date: May 22
Mileage: 21.6
May Mileage: 102.7
Temperature upon departure: 57

Some time on the road today gave me a chance to watch my legs do their pedal thing. It was not pretty.

My left leg holds straight and strong over the pedal, but my right knee pulls rather dramatically to the left. How far left? It’s centimeters away from crashing into the top tube, that’s how far left. Continued effort to straighten my leg felt tight and unnatural - like I was purposely trying to pedal bowlegged. But my natural inclination is to pedal like I’m overcome by an urge to pee. Ugly, ineffective and definitely detrimental.

An effect of knee injury ... or the cause? Probably both. There seems to be some knee-cap tracking that is causing the joint to collapse toward the inside. There also is the issue of my wimpy quad muscles that are probably disproportionately wimpy to one another.

Either way, the damage has been done. My concern is what I can do about it. I realize quad strengthening is the best road, but I’m not sure what the best exercises are. Wall sits are OK. Squats make me wish I were poking myself with a sharp pencils instead. Any suggestions?

Also, does anyone know of a brace or maybe a taping technique that might correct such a thing? I have been doing some Internet research, but almost all of it leads me in the direction of changing one's running habits. Tracking is common in cycling, but there doesn’t seem to be much readily available information about how to fix it on a bike.

Probably time to call my physical therapist again. I am definitely not thrilled about all of the medical bills that have been rolling in lately. I think if I knew three months ago what I know now, I would cash in all those copays and sell my bikes and take one of those Alaska cruises.

On second thought ... scrap that. Better to go to Antarctica.