Down He Goes – Part 1

On September 19th I tore my medial meniscus along with experiencing some nasty bone bruising. This is the first time I’ve written about it and really decided to reflect on what happened. Recently I made a small attempt to resume my weighlifting, but the knee hasn’t responded well. Perhaps this will give me some closure and guidance on what to do, along with help you lovely readers work through issues you are having with your health, fitness, and life in general.

At the time the injury occurred, I was still an avid weightlifter and had just completed a session in which I had to Front Squat, Snatch, and Clean and Jerk. As the training session was coming to a close I performed a new movement that I had incorporated for the purposes of increasing ankle mobility. The goal I was trying to achieve was a more upright position in the receiving position of the snatch and the clean.

I began with a few deep body weight squats with my feet close, then slowly began to descend and ascend on one leg. I had completed 2 sets and began my last go-around on my right leg. The first rep went fine. The second rep was smooth. The third rep, coming out of the bottom of the motion, I felt a big pop on the inside of my knee.

The pain was minimal, but being all too knowledgeable about the anatomy of the human body, I knew something had gone wrong on a structural level. This wasn’t a pulled muscle. I knew what that felt like. This was something different.

I immediately sat down on the ground in the middle of my campus gym, not out of pain, but out of shock and worry. As people past me by I slowly examined my right knee. The inside of my right knee looked “bigger” for lack of a better word than the inside of my left knee. I poked around for pain and found some, right on the inside of the joint line between my femur and tibia. I also performed some poorly executed stability tests to see if there was any ligament damage, those came back negative.

Suddenly I found myself in the middle of a prayer. I wasn’t sure who it was to, but I asked for everything to be alright. I was already scared to lose weightlifting. It was more than something I did, it was a part of me. I didn’t define myself by weightlifting, I was weightlifting. It felt incorporated into my biology, no different from the cellular structure of my body. What would a life without weightlifting be? Would it be a complete, full, rich life? If not, would it be a life at all?

(In the coming days and weeks I will discuss the various outcomes that tearing my meniscus had on my health. Stay tuned)


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