Certain pains are a threat to our well-being and have the potential to keep us from enjoying an active lifestyle. However, many pains are not really that big of a deal.
I like to think of pain like I’d think of an invite list for a party. Some of the people on the list can get a little bit out of control (after a few cocktails), but they’re not a threat to your house or to the other guests. But then there are those people you have to keep an eye on. They’re the ones who (after a few shots) might throw up on the carpet, break the garbage disposal, or make a pass at your wife.
So this morning, for instance, when I enjoyed my first run since Challenge Atlantic City (8 days ago), the first five minutes were met with pain in my calves. But this was muscular pain, due likely to muscle soreness, and it was not a threat. So I persisted. Then, around Mile 4, there was pain in the middle (outer portion) of my right knee. Again, this was more like discomfort, and I know from having a history of knee pain, that this was no big deal. However, at about Mile 5, I felt a soft ping on the inside of my left knee. That is cause for concern, as I know that inner knee pain can be tough for me to recover from. So I did not complete a final lap on the trail and, instead, headed home. Better to run 7.5 miles and be able to run in a couple of days, than to run 8.5 miles and be side-lined for a week.
Of course, this article might be more aptly titled: “Listen to Your Body.” If you are paying attention to the signals your body sends, I do believe you can exist more effectively.