Yesterday, I got on the bike for the first time in a week and it was absolutely glorious. Overhead was grey, but spring was in the air; that flowery scent coupled with mild temperatures and absence of razor sharp winds trying to cut your face off. My one mile trip to Ocean Terminal was over in 8 minutes, but the pleasure derived from such a short stretch was insanely good.
I realise that description sounds a bit hyperbolic, but after being off the bike for yet another week due to knee troubles, that quick journey in the spring air was blissful. Now that spring is coming and the dreadful winter conditions are going, cycling opportunities go from “you’ll have had your tea” to “all you can eat buffet”. And that is bad news for someone like me, with a massive appetite and badly behaved knees.
My knees are the least favourite thing happening in my life. I am 30 years old, otherwise healthy and physically active, yet for some reason two of the major joints in my body are petulant teenagers, taking a hissy fit when asked to contribute to the task at hand. It’s been an issue for around a year now, but the pain and irritation has had me on and off the bike for the last three months, like some stupid game of musical chairs. Obviously, my Great Edinburgh Bike Experiment is being prejudiced by the whole, silly nonsense.
My knees need to man up. Their misbehaviour is really messing with my mojo. When I gave this obvious explanation to the physio, they said that it’s more complicated than that and gave me lunges and stuff to fix it.
Eight months later and things are deteriorating. It’s not like I’ve just been moping around, avoiding said lunges and shouting at my knees. I appreciate they need love and care and all that jazz. I’m doing loads of physio exercises, drinking collagen powder, ingesting horse pills for joints, attempting alternative forms of exercise (go, yoga!) and, miserably, cutting down the cycling.
Now that spring is here and my knees are getting worse, I’m starting to get a bit worried. I’ve even cancelled my 11 day Hebridean cycle tour for fear that my legs would just rot out from under me on Harris. Why are they not starting to get better?
To help answer this most important of questions, I’m off to yet another professional next week. After two physios, a podiatrist and a brief and useless visit to the GP, I’m pinning my hopes on a chap who specialises in pilates. I am keeping everything crossed (except the knees) in the hope that he might be able to shed some light on this infuriating situation.
Have you had ongoing knee problems? How on earth did you fix them?