Couch to 5K
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Painful hips and wobbly legs!

Hi everyone - Good morning on this beautiful day! Yesterday I did the 2nd run of week 1 which I managed, however my hips really hurt when I run and I feel like my legs are not strong enough - like they would collapse easily if I tripped or something. I've also noticed that my left foot turns in slightly when I run. Does any of this sound like normal stuff to overcome - any thoughts/advice would be greatly appreciated.

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Hi Charles - everyone runs differently. Once you have been running for a few weeks it may be an idea to have a gait analysis done at a local independent sports shop as they will be able to recommend the 'correct' shoes for you. You need to be able to run for about 5 minutes before they can do this, and they will get you to try different shoes on their treadmill to see what works best for you.

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You don't mention which week you are on, but I am guessing W1.

Yes that all sounds fairly normal first week stuff. When we start running we put a whole load of new stresses and strains and demands on our bodies, and aches, pains and grumbles are the consequence. Your legs will get stronger. Your hips will ache less (although possibly not immediately) and dont worry about your foot pointing inwards unless you're tripping over it.

If the pain in your hips is really severe to the point of needing to see a doctor, then obviously something is wrong and see a doctor. Otherwise, be sure to hydrate, do some stretches after your run : I'm sure someone will be along to link the NHS Stretch and Flex page, or there are loads on Yout Tube etc if you just Google 'stretches for runners'. Make sure you find some stretches that focus on ooening up your hip flexors.

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Totally normal. At the beginning my legs would feel so tired like they were going to give out at any moment. It's only early days for you so keep at it but listen to your body - aching is fine - pain is not. I also recommend doing some other work to strengthen your legs. I did some gym work - nothing major - but I also started spinning and running and spinning together have strengthened by legs enormously and made running less impossible. My advice, given what you've written above, is to go to a running shop and get a gait analysis to make sure you are wearing the right kind of trainers. At this stage it's not normally necessary but if, like me, you have some kind of "issue" with one of your feet, it's pretty important. I broke two metatarsals five years ago and as a result, my left foot rolls inwards very badly. I also over-pronate so having the right shoes is essential.

You could also look at strengthening your Iliotibial Band or IT as a lot of runners refer to it. Do you stretch after you run? For me, if I don't stretch things out afterwards I am guaranteed tight calves and hips.

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Doesn't necessarily only happen at the start. I had less problems to start with than I thought I would. I was doing lots of stretching. After my first 20 minute run and again last night on my first 30 minute I got to the end and my legs had forgotten how to walk. Obeying laura's instruction to keep moving was so hard on such wobbly legs. I guess it shows we are pushing ourselves and doing well. Doesn't feel like that at the time.

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Legs can never cope with gravity after a swim lol - and looking at others coming out of the reservoir, seems that is normal!

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My hips really hurt at the start. I think was secondary to my posture. Try not looking at the ground ( I was because I also had the latter part of your problem, fear of falling). Head up and look ahead with relaxed shoulders (the last bit takes a few tries). The weak legs - they get stronger with running.

There could be a sort tissue inflammation or arthritis but if it is only on running then it is less likely. I suspect the problem occurs in those of us with excess weight (so if you are slim, I would hope it settles quicker). If it persists then a trip to the doctor for a check may be necessary.

Hope you are running in trainers rather than flat shoes/plimsols as then you will have some arch support which will help with the foot turning in (I assume you mean turning over not just the toes pointing inwards). That will help your posture, which will help your back etc.

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If your foot turns in, I think this should be taken as a massive clue as to what's going on.

By turning in, do you mean it rolls inwards, or do you mean that an imaginary line running through your heel and your big toe doesn't go straight forward?

Either will completely change the way forces are routed through your legs and hips, leading to increased fatigue in the joints, and pain.

If your foot is rolling in, that suggests fallen arches (flat feet) but if it's only one side, it could just be a muscle weakness that will resolve over time. Otherwise supportive shoes are special insoles might be the way to go.

If your foot is actually pointing inwards, that's going to put immense stress on your hips and needs to be addressed early to avoid bursitis or worse.

I would personally look at stretching exercises to loosen the hips. This may help with your posture too. But I'd also be asking for a GP referral to a podiatrist. The podiatrist will ask you to walk a few paces bare foot, and he or she will watch how everything moves. They spot everything. Very often their 'prescription' is then just a set of simple exercises to improve various alignments.

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Well done! It's early days yet, it's just great that you're doing it. Remember only go slow n steady, that's key to good progress through c25k.. rest if you get pain,hopefully it'll fade away, aches n pains can come on when a newbie... I had a few aches in hips and legs when I first started, being a mild aching I was able to carry on slowly and was fine..😊

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