Couch to 5K
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Totally fed up!

I've completed week 5 but only at risk of injury. Despite warming up and gently stretching, each time I run I'm obviously straining my left achilles tendon and in pain. I'm so frustrated because I feel I've done well and enjoyed the plan so much and felt confident in my ability to complete the 9 weeks. I'm worried about running in case I do myself serious injury. At this rate I'll be back to week 1 again. Any suggestions fellow C to 5k-ers? Hope you're all doing well

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I’m on last day of week5 also & keep getting terrible pain below the inside of my knee, looking for advice as well. I seem to stretch lots after my run but maybe not as good before I start as prob just wanting to get out there. Will follow ur post maybe we will get some good advice from the experts...

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Terrible pain?! You should never, ever, run through pain. I did. Please see my reply to Sarah below.

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I am not an expert!!!!!

But I had a pain( dull ache/ discomfort) where you describe.

So I went to see an expert ( Sports physio) who took 1 look at me, then did some other walking and balancing assessments and said I over pronate on one leg.

Now I know we are all different, and the knee is minefield of potential diagnoses, but It is something for you to consider.

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Can I ask how he told you to d sl with this Particular problem, did u need to change how u ran?

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No change to how I ran, she applied some rock tape to lower thigh, below knee and around calf, to allow some support, and made an orthotic to go under the existing insole of the trainer of my over pronating foot.

The whole lot cost £65:00, and she feels I don't need further session. I have emailed her with an update, as I now have a couple of entirely new niggles( the pain below my knee has gone) and she has suggested that is adjustments to the corrected foot position. I have to say my leg feels great today. See how it is after Friday.

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Are you certain it's the achilles? If it is it's fixable but you'd need to see a physio who would give you the appropriate exercises. The achilles is a stubborn customer and takes a while to settle down but there are other things with similar symptoms.

Have you done the gait analysis, are you wearing insoles (if you need them) and have they been fitted in by the gait analysis guys?Have they chosen your shoes? What sort of warm up and stretching do you do? I would always go from that list and check that all is done first.

I know all that stuff because l blatantly ignored it and got injured. Twice. Both injuries (knee and ankle) nearly stopped me from running again. Don't do 'me'.

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No, not done a gait analysis. A friend has suggested this and there's a couple of places in my area so worth a try.

I am fairly sure it's Achilles. Pain from the back of my heel and up the back of my calf.

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Another reason to do gait and ask for exercises, l do mine twice every day. Achilles if untreated leads to no running and you don't want that.

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Hi Sarah,

Sorry to hear that. I do admire the determination, but you do need to look after your body. I should also heed my own advice sometimes as well...

From my experience, I have sometimes felt a tightness above my left ankle, suspected Achilles tendon. I thought it was the running and increased stretching, but it only gets tight if I've been cycling. So, is there anything else you're doing that might cause it?

Good luck.

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I'm exercising more in general but it's only when I run that I'm getting this. Someone I know suggested my running shoes might be the problem and that there are places local to us where you can do a treadmill run to see what your running style is and then get shoes which suit that.

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Yep. That's a gait analysis. Definitely worth it if you're planning on sticking to the programme past week 5. Get some proper running shoes, which can be pricey, but find a shop near you that will perform the analysis for you and get you the type you need.

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Hi, a couple of things that no one else has mentioned. I suffer a bit from lower calf tightness (which can then cause the Achilles to swell). I use a Yoppit foot rocker to stretch - pretty cheap, but effective. Also, every day, both before and after runs, I foam roll both calfs. There are YouTube videos that show the technique. As others have said, if a few days rest plus stretching and rolling doesn’t make it feel better, best to see a physio. Hope it helps, and good luck!

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That's really helpful. Thank you.

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I too am feeling frustrated. I'm due to run Week 8 run 3 and see the end in sight but think I have shin splints in one leg as had it for over 2 weeks now and it's not going away. My last 2 runs havent been good - I've had to slow down and then I'm limping afterwards just walking and can't put my full weight on it. I think I've just overdone it as started 'back to netball' too, I've made sure I've had a rest but probably too much after doing practically no exercise before.

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Take extra rest days to let your muscles recover and try loosening your shoe laces too.

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Hi Sarah, I had problems with my calf too. I used to stretch between my runs (in the walking bit). Then I read an article saying that this actually makes it worse and advised to tighten your muscles while running with the idea of tiring them out and help them relax. It helped slightly.

What really did help was a class of piyo (pilates / yoga). It seemed to help stretching all the right muscles.

Hope you find the solution that suits you.

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Thank you. I appreciate your reply and I'm glad you found a solution.

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It’s a really good idea to take extra rest days during the final weeks- 3, 4 or even 5 days between, until there are no niggles.

It might seem frustrating but there’s no need to hurry to the end of the program and it can make a huge difference.

Compression sleeves can help for lower leg soreness too, £13 from Boots.

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Now that does sound like a good idea. Thank You!

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