Knee Pain… But Also, Puppies!!!

Today we’re going to talk about puppies.

You know why? Because it’s Wednesday. And who gets excited about Wednesday?

But first, a few other things…

As you may recall, I went for a run yesterday morning. I did 6.5 miles, mostly on Central Park’s Harlem Hills. I felt fine during the run.

But afterward…not so good.

When I stopped to stretch before leaving the park, the back of my left knee was killing me. It was a scary pain — like the muscle was really tight and about to pop.

I was OK getting home, got ready for work just fine and made it to the subway without any problem. But after standing still on the subway commute to work and then having to get off the subway — that was a bit of a challenge.

The muscle completely tightened up. I could barely make it up the subway stairs and had to choke back tears.

I refuse to get injured during marathon training, dang it.

True story.


I seriously debated taking a cab across town because I was in so much pain. (I didn’t. I just took a really long time getting to the office.)

So naturally I freaked out.

Ow, Charlie!

I emailed Coach Cane immediately for advice, and of course he made me feel better:

“No freaking out yet. Aches and pains are par for the course. That’s not to say we ignore them, but just recognize that it’s not unusual. Minor setbacks are normal and not insurmountable.”

Whew. So I’m not going to die?

He told me to ice it, and of course there was no ice at my office.

But then something magical happened:


I got a call from the receptionist that there was a package for me at the front desk.

Everything I needed, including the dark chocolate.

There was no note, but the return address on the package indicated this all came from a nice boy who knows I enjoy dark chocolate.

I got the ice pack going, propped my leg up on an exercise ball and voila! I woke up today feeling no pain at all.

I’m glad I decided not to go to spinning last night like I had planned. Instead I was able to go this morning once I felt better. The class was fine. I took it pretty easy but still sweat a ton, which is always lovely.

Do you want to talk about puppies now?

After work last night I joined my dear friend Lauren at American Kennels on the Upper East Side. She said she was “getting a dog,” though in reality that idea wasn’t totally approved by her live-in boyfriend.

So she didn’t get one, but we still got to play with lots of them.

The first puppy I held was my favorite: PUG!

Here I am with the tiny pug.

The pug was awesome. He was all squirmy and happy and at one point I swear I heard him ask if I would take him home. Sadly I can’t have dogs in my building. Otherwise that little guy was mine.

Next we played with a white dog. I don’t remember what kind it was, but it was cool.

Lauren and Puppy #2
Hello, furball

Fun fact about this dog: It could have been cast in The Lion King. See how great the puppy is at re-enacting the “Circle of Life” scene?

The ciiiircle of lifeeeee!

I would obviously play the role of Rafiki. Blue butt and all.

Next dog: The French Bulldog.

This is the dog I will get someday. Trust me. It’s going to happen.


French Bulldog didn’t want to play. He just wanted to cuddle.

I like cuddling too, buddy.

Want an up-close shot? Here you go:

Wrinkly and awesome

The last puppy we got to enjoy was a Cavapoo. Apparently this is a Cavalier King Charlies/Poodle hybrid. It was the crowd favorite I think.

So mellow. So fun.

Wicked cute.

We fell in love fast.

Kisses? OK.

That’s it for puppy pictures. I hope you said “Aww” at least once. It was the only sound coming out of my mouth last night.

And now, on with the day. Have a great Wednesday, friends!

DO YOU WANT TO KEEP TALKING ABOUT PUPPIES? What’s your favorite kind? And do you have one? And can I have it?



53 Responses

  1. I have a fantastic puppy named Barbara Walters and you can play with her anytime. I know that sounds dirty, but I really mean it. She likes to make friends.

  2. I LOVE puppies and hanging out in puppy stores! I mean, dog watching is one of my fave parts of running in Central Park :-).

    I once had a beagle puppy and he was the most adorable little guy ever. I’m still biased towards beagles but also like lab puppies, golden retriever puppies and Pugles.

    This post made me smile!

  3. Oh my gosh, hahaha, my husband and I totally lift up our cats and reenact the Circle of Life on a weekly basis! HAHAHA!!…So happy your knee pain isn’t anything serious! Just wait until you begin the taper the 2 weeks before the marathon, you will be convinced every bone in your body is broken, but somehow on race morning you will feel like a million bucks. The human body be crazzzzzy like that!. Keep up the great work!

  4. AHHH LOVE PUPPY PICS~ I am getting a puppy in 3 weeks and could not be more excited!! Hes a golden doodle 🙂 Come check out my morning post for pictures that will make your heart melt. I am considering transferring from writing a running blog to writing a blog soley based on puppy pics as soon as he gets here

  5. I literally squeal every time I see a puppy…I want one so badly!! The pictures are precious. Looking at puppies might be the best pick-me-up!
    I’m sorry to hear about your knee pain, but your coach is right, it could just be nothing. Crossing my fingers for you! Take good care of it!

  6. I love this blog! I just had to say it. You crack me up and are always so happy and positive. This has fast become my favorite blog. You look so darn happy with those puppies. 🙂

  7. I have a puppy, who’s actually almost not a puppy anymore. Lucy is a 10 month Havanese-Yorkie (my expensive mutt)…so I’m kinda biased, but she’s my FAV!

    …that was soooo sweet of your secret admirer to send over that package- he’s a keeper! haha

  8. I WANT A PUPPY. New York is so freaking mean with all the puppy window displays. They always make me want to go buy one, and then I get mad at myself for thinking I need a designer puppy when shelters are full of them, and then I realize I’m late to wherever I’m going because I’ve spent so much time in puppy land. They should invent magical puppies that never grow up.

  9. Chocolate definitely cures achy knees. I’m glad someone in NYC knows how to fix the problem. I’m also glad you chose puppies over spinning last night. Puppies come in a close second to chocolate. Rest that leg and feel better!

  10. Those puppies are PRECIOUS! And it sounds like this nice guy is pretty precious too 😉

    My parents got two German Shorthaired Pointers two years ago and I’m OBSESSED with them. Big, fun running dogs, but SO loving! They each weigh 60 pounds and they think they are lap dogs. I want one!

  11. I wanted a puppy for so many years, but lived in apartments and had too busy a life to give a dog the time it needed. Now that I have a house and a husband (to share the duties with!) I have a Tamaskan puppy and he is the best thing ever! I am so in love with my dog. They are a lot of work, but so worth it. There is nothing better than puppy cuddles!!

    Glad your knee is on the mend!

  12. A) ow charlie- ha! (So the hill kinda bit u?)
    B) this magical cute boy not only brings you chocolate cake but has bandages and ice and (more) chocolate delivered?! Lucky/so happy for you! (Does he have any lovely single friends, perhaps?)
    c) I always say I want a timeshare on a puppy. So I can take it for walks and play but not have to leave it at home all day long. My only condition is that it must not be big- dog must be smaller than human otherwise I just think the whole owner/pet relationship gets thrown off (or I just get scared..whatev)

  13. I have knee pain today. But I know what caused it. I managed to trip on the sidewalk and slam both knees, both hands, and cheekbone into the concrete. Owwwww. Ice is definitely a knee’s best friend.

    And puppies make everything better. I don’t have a dog but I want one. I’d love to get a corgi, but if I just had a dog as awesome as my mom’s I would be happy.

  14. Sounds like the nice guy who sent the package is a keeper! Any man who sends dark chocolate to your office is a sweetie. Glad you’re not feeling any pain!

  15. awwwwwwwwwwwwww puppies! i want them all! i want them all! haha 🙂 i have a cocker spaniel named malibu. unfortunately she’s not a puppy anymore & is getting quite old, but i still like to dream!

  16. Yay for puppies!!! I’m so happy you posted these pictures! I have a maltipoo named Pita and I love her to death. She is the cutest sweetest thing on the planet!

    I really hope your knee feels better soon. Injuries during marathon training suck but at least you still have a little time if you need to take an extra day off to rest! I loooove that your guy sent you a care package! That’s pretty awesome.

  17. Nice pictures, puppies are awesome.
    What worries me about runners is how quickly they feel sharp/acute onset of pain and how quickly they declare fit/healed and back to normal. I personally don’t buy it at all and nor should anyone else.
    Try to look back at some of previous weeks runs. If the pain was so intense out of nowhere, they must be signs. That is why a running notebook is helpful where you write comments about your run (other than just distance, pace) so you can go back and check. Were you running your slow runs slow enough? Usually injuries/minor setbacks happen when you aren’t running slow runs slow enough to add Hills/Speed to your training.

    I hate to sound pessimistic but take your time in getting back from that minor injury. Laying low in terms of mileage/effort for 7-10 days won’t affect your conditioning at all but will reduce chances of further setbacks exponentially. Right now you can afford to lose a week in training easily but it becomes more difficult as you get closes to your marathon. Like all coaches say, starting a marathon healthy and fit is first goal.
    Best wishes,

    1. Thank you for the comment — I’m definitely still being hyper-aware of how things feel and I don’t expect that the pain is gone for good. I talked with Coach Cane this morning and he said that I can still ice 1-2 times today to reduce any swelling, and he, too, assured me that if we cut back on my mileage this week as a precaution I’ll still be totally fine. Thanks for your concern!

  18. I am so sorry about your knee pain, but glad it has gone away! And what a sweet package to have arrive at work. 🙂
    I love puppies too – my boyfriend and I have a pitbull and even though she looks scary to a lot of people, she is the sweetest, most loving dog ever! It’s funny I used to see pitbulls and think they looked mean, now I just love every single one I look at! They are usually big goofballs with loving personalities.
    Also, I hope that when you do get a dog someday that you consider going through the humane society or a rescue organization. There are SO many doggies out there that need homes…

  19. OMG love the care package you got – that is the sweetest thing ever. Esp since it “cured” your knee pain. woohoo!! My knee has been bugging me a TINY bit and I’m totally afraid to re-injure myself so praying it goes away (didn’t run today just to be safe). Whew. LOVE THE PUPPIES!! I’d want to take them ALL HOME!

  20. Oooh gosh I know how scary knee pain can be, been there. But it looks like the magical package has helped. DOn’t push it too hard. Lots of rest and ice with puppy love is just what the doctor ordered!

  21. This handsome man is awesome!! So amazing that he sent you that care package — and so fast! It’s great that he’s totally paying attention to your interests and needs. Loveeeee it!

    And I have a golden retriever back at home with my parents –Cinnamon!! — and miss her oh, so much! If I can’t take her to the city, you can’t have her either 😛

  22. Glad the knee pain went away with the icing. If you aren’t already…rolling on the foam roller or with the stick or getting a massage can really help tight muscles.

    Cute puppies:)

  23. The puppies are definitely cute. We have two dogs. A schnauzer/yorkie mix (18lbs) named Diva & a Pit-mix (60lbs) named Wyatt. they are fun & adorable, but a lot of work!

    Glad your knee is feeling better today.

  24. I’m even more in love with your amazing man now and glad you’ve found such happiness with him.

    AND NO. YOU CANNOT HAVE BAILEY. But you can come play whenever you want 🙂

  25. I love all of those puppies!! What a great note to finish the day. Also, that care package is the sweetest thing in the world! Hope the knee is feeling better!

  26. I have a husky named Rogan Furlove and he is the light of my life. I never thought I would be a dog person, no less a husky person until I laid eyes on him. Love.

    PS. Love your blog! Enjoy it every morning with my cup of coffee:-)
    PPS. That handsome friend of your’s sounds like a stand-up guy!

  27. When I read you had a knee pain yesterday I went into panic mode myself…SO glad its feeling better! And I want this new friend of yours to have a few words (and/or host etiquette /charm school classes) with my boyfriend…tehe.

    I grew up with black lab mixes..big dogs that don’t know they are big and love to cuddle!

  28. It is SO hard not to freak out when feeling any type of pain, especially when you are SO dedicated and determined. But it does help to take step back! and puppies definitely help 🙂

  29. just had to comment, getting a thoughtful package from your man is super points, so thoughtful, and so easy, great job! Way to distract you from the knee pain.

  30. I want a puppy sooooo badly!!!! But like you, my building won’t let me have one! I already have dogs and names picked out for the future (no, I don’t want children…I’d rather have 800 dogs to play with, and it’s a good thing my fiance is in the same boat!). I would love a little Westie named Nilla, a Norwich terrier named Norman, 2 miniature Schnauzers with brown undercoats named Chai and Cocoa, and the list could go on and on!

  31. Oh my gosh, I want them all!! I have a golden retriever that we lovingly call the worlds smallest golden. She was the runt of the litter and only half grew up. People still think she is a puppy even though she’s almost 3 and we love her to death!

  32. I’ve had to golden retrievers growing up – first one we got as puppy when I was 7 and it ate and tore up everything and kinda scared me and my sister so we ended up giving her to a family who had older kids and lived on a farm. We then got Baxter, the best dog ever, in 7th grade — he was 5 and housebroken already. He was just like the dog from Marley and me. Baxie had to be put to sleep a few years ago – it was so sad! I want to get a dog and name it Winston, in honor on Winston Churchill. A bulldog, I think.

    I agree– aches and pains are par for the course with marathons. Somedays my SI joint acts up and I swear I’m going to be crippled. One thing to think about – when I was training for my first marathon, my knee started killing me and I swore I was probably going to have to have surgery (you know, exaggerating as usual). I then switched shoes to my new pair and voila! knee pain gone! Make sure your shoes haven’t passed their “mileage limit!”

  33. I have a corgi. She’s so sweet but very shy. She was rescued from a puppy mill where she was definitely mistreated. I’d love another dog, but I’m pretty sure pumpkin wants to be an only dog.

  34. Ugh, WHY do annoying pains have to pop up during marathon training? Seriously, why? So incedibly annoying and unnecessary. So glad to hear it went away though! And hopefully it stays away forever, or at least until post-marathon.

    How did you leave without a puppy? I can’t walk into pet stores or the pound because I want them all and then I cry for days that I can’t have them. Very rational.

  35. So glad to see your knee is feeling better! I ended up injuring my knee after I lost my insurance so I couldn’t get it checked but I found that ice and rest as well as yoga have turned my knee around completely. I am not totally 100% but I am slowly improving a little bit everyday! (And the mysterious package was awesome!! Whoever sent it to you surely likes you a lot!!!)

  36. I’m that weird chick who wants to “say hi” to every dog I passed on the street. My favorite kind of dog is a good old-fashioned mutt….because that is what I have! I basically had to move out of my old apartment (that did not allowed dog) because I couldn’t live without a dog any longer.
    I hope your leg feels better….and yes, aches and pains are definitely a part of marathon training. Just don’t push through it if it doesn’t go away in a few days.

  37. I love puppies.. grew up with a dog all my life- but our lifestyle just isn’t conducive to a dog rightnow.. so puppy talk away!
    Glad you knee was just tight and you are feeling better! Hope you take it easy for a bit!

  38. THE PUPPIES!!! I am so jealous you got to play with so many babies!!! So, so, so sweet. My favorite is the beagle/chihuahua mix that is my niece Santana, but I’ve been seeing some really great ones lately, such as a big fluffly white baby who I photographed, followed, and considered hugging, and yesterday a tiny adorable happy Vizsla who just wanted to play with everyone. I also like dogs with feet that look like socks.

    Um how sweet is that package. Wow. And how did he get it there so fast, a messenger? That is seriously amazing and touching.

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about ali

I’m the creator of the Ali on the Run blog and the host of the Ali on the Run Show podcast. I’m also a freelance writer and editor, a race announcer, a runner and marathoner, a mom, and a huge fan of Peanut M&Ms, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (way better than the first one!), and reliving my glory days as a competition dancer in the early 2000s. I’m really happy you’re here.
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