What is the best way to avoid knee pain and stiffness in addition to stretching?

After completing week 5 my left knee became very painful and slightly swollen, the lower leg moving with a slight loss of control. Haven't run for over a week now! I massaged above and below the knee - quite uncomfortable but it does make a difference and I'm hoping to get back to the program in a couple of days. I always stretch before and after a run but evidently I'm missing a trick somewhere. Has anyone had this problem?

1 Reply

  • Sorry you have pain, but I have been there and getting over it. Not without plenty of TLC and changing my route (as the camber of the road was effecting my gait) and changing my shoes for some even stronger for pronating bods (the Asics Gels). It could be that you have a sprain or a strain of a ligament or tendon in the knee area. Depending if it is chronic (just being well used) or acute (like you suddenly twisted it) will depend on how long it takes to heal.

    RICE - rest ice compression elevation (and ibuprofen) :)

    Rest - goes without saying I think. Your body is telling you to slow down a bit, but don't let it put you off. Because those of us who haven't run a 100m in a long time are obviously stretching our bodies. The knees seem to complain the most in this regard ;)

    Ice it plenty of times during the day, with your leg up. Frozen peas are just as good as an ice pack, but I prefer my ice pack as it velcros on and stays firm so I can walk about if I need to.

    Compression: get a knee support for the area that you have pain. Or just strap it a bit to help hold the joint in the right position. Not too tight or your knee will be swollen (from lack of blood flow) ;) Just enough that you take the pressure of the bit that it hurting/damaged and let it rest.

    Elevation: Keep it up as much as you can. Also sleeping with a pillow under your knee may help (depending where the pain is).

    Then add some ibuprofen. This will help reduce the inflammation (paracetamol will only block the pain, but won't help with the physical swelling etc). Take 3 doses a day for about 3 days.

    If this isn't showing you progress/helping after 3 days, time to check with your doctor. As it could be a very bad sprain/strain or something else that you need physio for.

    Best wishes and look after yourself. You will back out there soon, a few days break is better than not being able to run at all (which can happen if you run too early on something injured).

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