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First week down on C25K but I've got knee pain.

(19 Posts)
ScrollDown Sun 17-May-15 21:21:55

After gaining 3 stone I have embarked on a healthier diet and exercise regime. I decided to try C25K even though I've spent my whole life avoiding running as I generally hate it. However, a week in and I'm a little addicted and have signed myself up for a 5k charity run as something to aim for. I do find it really difficult but love that feeling when I can collapse on the sofa at the end.

My body is a bit of a mess following 3 children. I have periodic knee pain, occasional sciatica/bad back and frequent hip joint pain which is often exacerbated by exercise. During my 3rd run my knees began hurting and the pain hasn't stopped. I'm not sure what to do now. Stop running until the pain stops? Find a different exercise? Keep going in the hopes it will improve? I'm a little bit gutted that this might get in the way as I'm quite focussed once I've set myself a goal.

Has anyone got any experience of this or advice about what I can do? TIA flowers.

ChrissieLatham Sun 17-May-15 22:12:32

Did you do stretches after the run? You could maybe try a hot bath or cold compresses on the painful bits and hope it goes

SwingingBalls Sun 17-May-15 22:25:22

Do you stick to the plan exactly?
You may need to stretch out afterwards.

ScrollDown Sun 17-May-15 22:57:27

I didn't do any stretching but will definitely do that next time. Thanks for the tip!

What shall I do about the pain now? Should I stop running until the pain has stopped or keep going? I'd like to keep it up if I can.

steppemum Sun 17-May-15 23:05:29

You must have decent running shoes if you are overweight and running. If you don't you will get joint pain.
Run of the mill trainers won't do. They don't need to be expensive, but they do need to be running shoes.

I got this when I first started (years ago, and then stopped, just started again!). I bought a pair and ran again and the pain stopped.

Warm up and cool down properly, and stretch.

ScrollDown Sun 17-May-15 23:33:29

Thank you Steppe. I've been following the NHS app so doing a warm up/down walk at the beginning/end but no stretches. I'm also just using some cheap trainers so will look into getting some proper ones.

One thing I did, which in hindsight might have been a mistake, was to not leave a day's rest between run 2 and 3 (I've been a bit over keen!). This is where the problem started I think.

I'm just not sure what to do now. Keep on running through the pain or stop until it's improved?

chutneypig Mon 18-May-15 07:10:06

I think I'd leave it for a few days and assess how your knees feel before redoing week 1 with new trainers and the rest days.

I got some running trainers for £25/30 which made a lot of difference to comfort. At the end of the programme I felt a twinge in my hip and went to have gait analysis done and bought more expensive trainers that have completely sorted that so if you can afford that and are very keen, that may be an option now.

I found the cool down stretches crucial at the beginning, less so now.

HolgerDanske Mon 18-May-15 07:12:12

Gait analysis so you know what sort of shoes you need.

Proper running shoes. If you can stretch to the top of your budget that would be best.

Always, always take a rest day when that's what the plan says.

ScrollDown Mon 18-May-15 08:56:07

I managed to suffer through day one of the shred (my plan was to run/shred on alternate days) and this morning I can barely walk. I'm a complete novice when it comes to sport/exercise so I've no real idea of what my limits are or what I should be doing.

The gait analysis seems like a good idea, particularly as I have hip problems. Where can I have this done please?

CQ Mon 18-May-15 09:04:47

Gait analysis can be done at any good running shop where they sell proper running kit, e.g. Sweatshop in my neck of the wood.

I just came on to say, if you can afford it, it might be worth a few sessions with a chiropractor to get you straightened out. I've had knee pain for about a year, treated partially by a physio but then it came back. Turns out knee pain was a result of my wonky hips which in turn came from a very stiff back. I'm being ironed out gradually and just started C25K again this week.

After a run I've been told to stretch hamstrings, glutes and quads for 45 - 60 seconds each, then do it again (i.e. stretch each muscle twice, for a long time) and then ice both knees. This is just while I get started again and build up the muscles - not normally recommended to stretch that long.

Good luck - and don't give up grin

ScrollDown Mon 18-May-15 09:29:49

Thank you so much for the advice everyone - I really appreciate it.

CQ - and don't give up - that exactly what I needed to hear grin. I suspect my issues might be similar to yours in that I have hip and back problems following SPD and sciatica during my 3 pregnancies. I had planned to see a chiropractor but money is very tight so it's sonething I've been putting off for a couple of years.

I did read an interesting article here about how weak hips can lead to knee pain. It suggests some exercises to strengthen the hip muscles.

I'm feeling rather naive! I thought it would be a case of donning trainers and a tracksuit and off I'd go but I'm finding out fast it's more complicated than that.

I'm a bit stuck as to what to do now. I would like to keep up the running but I'm wondering if it might be more sensible to work on my core strength and overall fitness so I can avoid the knee/hip/back problems. You would believe I was only in my early 30s the way I'm hobbling around grin.

CQ Mon 18-May-15 12:41:02

I think you might be right. Swimming might be better to avoid more joint strain. Maybe yoga or pilates would help too? It's good for strengthening and straightening out imbalances. Lots of workouts on YouTube for free.

Another cheap trick I've picked up from the chiropractor - get a lacrosse ball (size of a tennis ball, but made of hard rubber like a squash ball) and when the sciatic/lumber pain is bad, I put it on the ouchy bit and lean on a wall - sweet agony but after a few seconds the pain starts to ease and then I roll it around and it massages right in the tight spot. Can also use it for back, shoulders, wherever. Foam rollers also good but a ball gets right into the knots grin

steppemum Mon 18-May-15 12:51:17

If you can't run, then walk.
(obviously not if this causes pain)

But brisk walk is much less strenuous on joints, but will help towards fitness. When you get back to running, you will find it has helped.

You need to walk fast enough to get warm and need to take your hoodie off.

Also think about what your goal is.
Is it weight loss? Is it fitness? Is it to tone up? That will help you choose what will be helpful for you. If it is calorie burning, an exercise bike may be less strenuous, or swimming for example.

irishseas Mon 18-May-15 13:39:38

Hi Scrolldown, like you I was over keen when I first started out with C25k about 2 years ago, it's hard no to be!

I also tried running/shred on alternate days and ended up hurting myself. I ended up dropping the shred and sticking with the running, I think the shred is really hard on knees. I resigned myself that it would take 9 weeks and just concentrated on that. And it worked. I wanted to get fit and lose a little weight, I managed to get really toned (for me!) and felt fit for the first time in years. I think attempting the shred at the same time was overkill for my body at that time.

I'd echo what others have already said: Rest days and stretching are essential. As are a pair of decent runners, I had a cheap pair from Clarkes at first, as soon as I switched I felt the difference.

AnnPerkins Mon 18-May-15 14:09:34

Argh! It's so frustrating when you have all the motivation and enthusiasm and then your body lets you down sad

Perhaps you'll be OK if you start again, but more slowly? Let your muscles, tendons and joints build up to it gradually. My own knees suffered when I did too much too soon. I had ITBS, but there is a variety of knee injuries you can get from overdoing it at the start.

Most important first step is to get proper running shoes, the best you can afford. Also stretching is really important. Runners World has a good stretching routine. I feel it terribly if I don't stretch properly after a run. And I never run two days in a row, since getting shin splints during half marathon training which needed multiple sessions with a physio to get over.

Do you have to run on hard pavements or are there softer off-road routes you can take? Or use a treadmill in a gym to start with.

I really hope you can get back to it, you sound really up for the challenge. It would be such a shame to have to stop before you reach your goal.

Good luck!

MrsMook Tue 19-May-15 21:57:29

I started up after SPD trashed my fitness. 3 months after the birth I still had to get the bus home from the shops 500m away because I couldn't move my leg enough to walk uphill. That was the point that I went to an osteopath, and my body began to recover from then. 4 months later, I was ready to start C25k. I have to pay extra attention to my hip flexors when stretching.
You may be able to be referred for physio as an alternative. SPD can often be linked to an underlying weakness.

Stretch
Trainers
Rest days
Listen to your body

I'm conscious that my body has a weakness for injuries and have avoided so far. On Saturday I pushed myself at a Parkrun. On Sunday, I walked out the rest of my long run after getting a twingy knee. Yesterday I did an easier run, using wk1 C25k for gentle intervals to avoid over-using it, rather than a straight run. Rest is important - I normally do a mix of running and other activities on those days, and my body could tell swapping the other for extra runs!

ScrollDown Wed 20-May-15 12:04:45

Thanks agsin everyone for the advice.

Bit of an update: what I thought was knee pain is actually shin splints but right at the top of my shin bones below my knee. It's very painful and three days on I can barely walk. I was at the doctors Monday and he was very dismissive, told me to take painkillers and keep running but I'm worried I'll make it worse.

Nhs website said to cease running for two weeks and the build up slowly. I'm so frustrated! I really want to get back out there. I've found a sports shop locally that will do a hair analysis but until my shin splints have gone, there's not much I can do.

I'm also a bit worried about the charity run. If I don't run for two weeks, I'll have just 4 to train which isn't nearly enough but I guess I can walk/run in accordance with the point I'm at on c25k at that point.

What exercise can I do in the mean time? I'm thinking yoga or boxing type fitness as it's not so hard on the legs? Anyone know of any good YouTube videos I can do? Or anything I can do to sleep up the shin splint healing?

ScrollDown Wed 20-May-15 12:05:39

*Hair should be gait blush

AnnPerkins Wed 20-May-15 12:32:29

Yikes, nasty!

When I had shinsplints the physio treated them with deep tissue massage (ouch!) and ultrasound. She also made some wedges to go in my shoes to correct my overpronating.

It took a long time to build up again and more than six years later I still never run two days in a row.

My injury was caused by training for two half marathons so probably had gone a bit further than yours. Perhaps rest, massage and properly fitted shoes will do the trick? If you mix gradually building up the running with another cardio exercise like swimming or cycling/spinning you could minimise further risk of injury.

Good luck, they flipping hurt don't they? sad

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