On Friday, my therapist and I discussed my injury in a little more detail as well as how to proceed in the future. I'm not a doctor so excuse my lack of technical terms and inevitable mistakes. We think the problem is that my hamstring is both tight and weak. I don't know if I pulled it or if it built upon itself but when the hamstring became messed up for a lack of a better term it put a lot of pressure on my IT band. My therapist explained that a lot of hamstring injuries manifest themselves as IT band issues. Then because my IT band become so tight, my quad was overcompensating and causing my knee cap to track out of alignment.
I know it sounds complicated but the human body is complicated. Because there was no specific injury it is hard to know exactly what is going on but this is how we're treating it. Right now I'm going to therapy twice a week but will be reducing it down to once a week after Thanksgiving if everything keeps continuing in the right direction. Most of what I do can also be done at home so I'm also doing my stretches and strengthening at home. Because I've been asked, we are working on stretching the hamstring and loosening up the IT band as well as strengthening the hamstring and the glute. My abductors are really weak so we are going at them aggressively. All of this strengthening and stretching is also helping my running form (my knees buckle in a lot when I run).
Right now I'm only supposed to run about three miles. I am going to therapy today and am going to hopefully find out when I can run more frequently and/or for a longer duration. My first run was okay but not perfect. Towards the end my knee started getting tight. My second run was mostly good except for one huge hill we ran down. It was my first time running outside in the dark and I actually loved it. I think being with a group helped. My third run, yesterday, was great. It was SO cold outside but I bundled up and braved the temps. I ran for thirty minutes with no pain or discomfort!
Fingers crossed things keep heading in the right direction!