Couch to 5K
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Hi all. Have been a graduate for a couple of months now. On the whole, it's great. Dropped a stone, have managed 5k in under 30, and I've been out to 7k on occasion. Am running 3 - 4 times a week, really loving it, so all is good. Almost. The problem is in the title. I live in a hilly area, and my knees are really starting to suffer, particularly the morning after a hilly run. Classic 'under the kneecap pain', worse on one leg. I'm desperate to continue the progress i've made. So.... Do I run through it, hoping my knees are getting stronger? Do I stop for a fortnight? Do I seek medical advice? Anyone had the same problem and got through it? Any helpful tips, very gratefully received.

4 Replies

If I were you I think I would ease up for a little bit, maybe decrease your runs to 2 times a week, to see if that helps.

I made the decision to give myself a "rest" after developing shin splints shortly after I graduated and it actually put me out of action for a couple of months! I just found it so hard mentally to start again after a break.

You don't want to lose your momentum. But that's just my experience :)

Hope your knees feel better soon whatever you choose to do..


Stop. Wiat until you do not have pain during day etc. Do usual ice/compression/elevation stuff and analgesics to reduce swelling. Then resume running as soon as pain gone, but only run up to first onset of pain. Also do foam rolling for sides of illiotibial band and hip flexors and squats to strengthen your quads (which the kneecap is 'attached' to). Do lots of squats. Lots and lots.

I would massively recommend this book. It has been a Godsend for me.


I struggled with my knee on and off since staring the programme but, after a particularly painful run and weeks on the injury couch, I went to see a physio who specialises in running injuries. The bottom line is that all runners should be doing regular quad exercises to protect their knees. I posted the ones my physio gave me a few months ago. They have really helped me and I'm currently knee pain free and building up my distances again. Make sure you have the correct shoes for your gait and you could maybe consider getting additional gel insoles to give you some extra cushioning. Good luck. You're knees are precious and they need TLC. Do whatever it takes to protect them


I struggled with ankle and knee pain but I think it's because we're new runners and our bodies are not keeping up with our running. Our skeletons have to support our running and because we're not fully fit we suffer these niggly pains

I started doing other exercises to try and get fit all over. I also walk a lot, with the dog and go hiking. Cycling is good too. I bought some exercise DVD's and do those at home and have found them absolutely brilliant. You could join a gym if you an afford it, or go swimming.

I like to run on the trail, and alternate between road and trail so I'm not pounding the pavements all the time

I hope you can find a solution to your knee ache and enjoy your running. Good luck


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