Monday, March 16, 2009

I Wear Black On The Outside Because Black Is How I Feel On The Inside

Ok, the lyrics are Morrissey from a song called "Unloveable", and although I don't really ever wear black, I just feel really down right now and this lyric is very apt given the report I heard from the Ortho this morning.

Where to start? Well first things first, I need to put a plan in place and I need to contact a few people, namely the AAI and Pete Reilly. My plans have been forced to undergo a major reorg

Since I am in poor to desperate spirits I will keep this short. My knee, for want of a better term, is wrecked. The adjective that the Dr kept using was 'Screaming'. On that note, I was very fortunate to get in and see Dr Brian McKeon who works with the Boston Celtics. It gave me confidence to know that in the morning before I had my consultation the Dr was with Kevin Garnett. Not that NBA or any professional sports players are more important than Joe Soap, rather it means he has a clear understanding of the desire to compete and push the body beyond where it wants to go. I believe the surgeon that scoped my knee last year had little understanding of how serious I was when I told him that it would take A LOT to stop me from training extremely hard again. Dr McKeon is the opposite, he was very straight to the point, he was very quick to present me with the situation, and he was very quick to give me the simple scenario without a care to whether he was offending me or not. I love this. Don't give me any bullshit about how too much running is bad for the knee. Tell me exactly what my options are because you know I want to get back to the very best I can be.

So here is the quick bullet point layout of my diagnosis:
- 1cm x 1.5cm piece of cartilage dislodged and floating in my knee
- Major bone contusions on the surface of my femur and tibia.
- Stress Fracture on the surface of my tibia
- Lots of swelling and general mess

Here is the quick bullet point of the doctors recommended plan:
- No Run for 3 months
- Synvisc injections every Friday for 4 weeks
- Wear a special brace that will relieve pressure on my medial joint line
- Aggressive PT to strengthen my quad
-Reintroduce weight baring on Alter G after 3 weeks
-Follow up MRI in 7 weeks to determine if Surgery is necessary

I asked for Surgery now but since the knee is in such a mess he refused to go in now. I am confident in his plan and I am viewing the situation with some optimism. The reason for this is that I only trained 15  weeks after 6 months off and went from 10 pound overweight to winning a national title. If I can get back training by the summer I will still be flying by Euro XC.

The downside of all this is that the DR said that from initial viewing of the MRI it looks like I am going to have to deal with chronic knee pain for the remainder of my career and that I will only be able to run the bare minimum moving forward. I'm thinking about 50 MPW with the rest of the time on the Bike and Alter-G.

The depression is related to being injured again. I thought I did everything right during this build up but again I get a serious injury. I really don't know what I did to deserve this. I barely averaged 50 MPW for the last 15 weeks. Only 2 weeks over 75. Only 3 races. It sucks ass big time and despite the Doctors plans I have to ask myself whether or not I am ready to deal with the cycle again. I told everyone who reads this Blog that one more serious injury and I am DONE. But something inside me won't let go.  I will enjoy bike riding for a while but I will look at the pics from the National XC and remind myself, 15 weeks of training. 

More thoughts to come but that is the gist of it.

Thank you all for the support and lets believe that "There Is  A Light That Never Goes Out"

Love Kel


  1. sorry to hear about this man. it's a terrible turn of events. head up. eyes forward.

  2. There is very little to say except that the little voice that keeps saying 'this is bullshit, i'm not done yet' should be listened to as long as you heed the Doc's plan. You said yourself you can do it on 15 weeks, I know as well as anyone how shit the gym/bike/anything but running can be, but it will get you where you want to be. That light is still on, keep the faith. And I'll do my best to make sure you're lining up as part of Louth team in November.

  3. Sorry Keith, I really feel for you man. Its been inspirational for a long-injured runner to read your blog and it sucks to see you have to deal with it again. Keep your head and spirits up and you'll be back. Your passion is truly motivating, never lose it.

  4. I too have been really depressed for the last three or four days because my knee, which had been improving, went bad again and I'm back where I was a couple of months ago. Unlike yours, mine doesn't scream. It's more like it whines and groans.
    A few years ago I was talking to Peter Snell and we got to the topic of losing fitness. He said that as far as cardiovascular fitness goes, once you're really developed your cardiovascular fitness it's almost impossible to lose it. You'd have to be almost completely sedentary for years, maybe for decades. He told me that this opinion was based on actual tests and observations. So there months without running will not ruin you and you really should be able to fly by the Euro xc meet.
    Hang in there.

  5. Three months, not "there months."

  6. Keith,

    This blog has been an inspiration. Keep the faith, follow the docs plan, work your ass off in pool and gym and you will be back training in June/July with time to get ready for Euro X!!!

  7. This time you have the national title to cling to while you convalesce through this injury cycle. Please dont throw your hat at it,with luck you might have the right medical backup this time. This just might be the positive cycle your knee needs and if it works out the sky's the limit. Dont give up on a summer full of quality running just yet. Keep thet fire burning inside, dont put it out.

  8. Keith, hang in there mate. Its never too late for a come back. Get the knee sorted once and for all. I've tried many a comeback, and keep trying as its just about the love for running, no matter if you do get back, its about the journey. anyway, now you give old timers like me a chance to catch up with you. 3 months, will fly by. cheers aw

  9. Bro, If you are able to run properly again that will be great. That should be foremost consideration. It's supposed to be fun too and reading your last few weeks of entries doesn't sound like fun. We really need someone of your passion out there running at any level and inspiring others. I know you don't train your ass off to be a fun-run jogger, but with your talent and training 50 MPW you'll still be a damn great runner. Get the focus back on the fun! The fame will follow.

  10. Another barrier to overcome. It sucks, but there are more people that believe in you than the counter, and for good reason.

  11. Hi Keith,
    your Blog has pushed me to increase my training and inspired me so much too. Focus on the positives you'll be flying come the euro XC in Santry.
    Best of luck.

  12. Hi Keith
    Just catching up on your last few days, you have to keep the faith. Bad news but at least he didn't say you have to stop, just follow the docs orders and the euro xc will be possible
    Take care mate

  13. Keith - I'm a runner but this blog is followed by me and some non-running mates (neworder fans) here in ireland. We are hung over after paddy's day and now we read this - disgusted for you. This is pure shite. Your rise to win the nationals was like a movie - made sweeter by what you dealt with getting there. You can do it again man - keep the faith and the euros will be the real highlight of your story.

  14. Hi Keith. You don't know me but I'm a recent recruit to your club, Drogheda and District AC. We were all very proud of your achievements in Santry and we have no doubt that you will be flying again soon. I dabbled in a bit of cross-country when I was in secondary school and 12 years on I can still remember seeing you bounding along miles ahead of everyone else when you were running for St Marys. Keep the chin up. We're all rooting for you. You WILL make it to the Euros, and we'll be there to cheer you on. Keep the faith.

  15. Hey Keith,

    I've been dipping in and out of this blog every so often and I'm gutted for you after reading the latest post. The only thing I can say is that you've been through so much to get where you are, you just have to look upon this as another hill to climb and lets face it - who better than you to climb it. Your superb national title has given Drogheda athletics such a boost that I reckon the half of Drogheda will be in Santry in December when you line up for the Europeans, so we're all behind ya.

    Take care of yourself,

    P.S. Your run in Santry was still a topic of conversation in Top Shop yesterday and will be for a time to come I'd say.

  16. 13th December 2009 in Santry Demesne with a mens team medal. It'll be worth the cycle then. Keep the head and keep the faith.

  17. You're a hero Keith. Just remember there are hundreds of Irish runners back home rooting for you, thinking of you and supporting you. I hope your music helps you at times like this, it always helps me. I tend to listen to sad music to ge even sadder, as if to flush it out of me and then start again. 3 months isnt all that long especially when there are 269 days to go!

    Keep smiling,

    Go n'éirigh leat

    Love from Co Na Mí, Éire

  18. Keith hang in there man. I know it is easy for me to sit and say that but I can tell from what I have read from your blog you are one tuff dude. I have loved reading your blog over the last few months. Having all my friends here on Team USA MN I know how hard all you top leval runners work at it. Take care !!!

  19. absolutely heartbreaking stuff to read really seems like all this couldnt happen to a nicer guy,you seem like a really sound down to earth guy.theres no doubting the potential you have and id say its driven you up the wall that you havent been able to fulfill it!!just to let you know were all really proud of you and even more so of the face that youre still running,not giving up!!



  20. Ass regus face, never the pessimist eh? You know whats best and what you feel in your heart, keep yourself right, a repeat of JoKins strong words, 'head up, eyes forward...'. MG

  21. Hey Keith,

    Hang in there dude. I don't think I've talked to you since I watched that race with you in Goddard Park last spring. Anyway, I'm real sorry about everything that's happened. Keep your chin up. There is a lot of life left in Keith Kelly no matter what you do. This isn't the end of the road. Just a bumpy part.