Couch to 5K
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Should joint pain stop me running?

I have cracked the 30 minutes and am really pleased about this. However, I am really suffering with pain in my hips and ankles. I had 5 days off and have just come back from a run and, although I made it, I can barely lift my legs up. It isn't really muscle soreness - it is more my joints. I do have hypermobility in many of my joints and have to be very careful about injury.

I'm worried I'm just too heavy for running but I don't want to stop. Ideas and advice welcome!

2 Replies

There's an interesting thread about hypermobility and running here:

My first thoughts were that you might find it better to run off-road if possible ie on softer surfaces where the impact is less - you will find your muscles work harder but it is gentler on the joints (I've had problems with hip bursitis and sore ankles due to the impact and have found that running on tracks and mud is a lot more comfortable). It is also worth doing exercises to strengthen the muscles around the joints as this will help protect them from injury - squats, single leg squats, lunges etc are all good. I've got a wobble board (actually a cushion) and hope that using that for balancing and for squats will help strengthen the muscles. It might be worth speaking to a sports physio though.

Have you had gait analysis - you might find that different shoes have an effect as well.

Don't let anyone tell you you're too heavy for running - that's a nonsense !


They say you should never have pain with running, but something on me always hurts! I read the joints are the last to build strength and take longer then the muscles. I'm finding that what use to be horrible discomfort is now a light niggle every so often in my hip joints and knees. The ankles were the first to stop hurting. I will sometimes take an anti-inflammatory and use ice. Just try to remember, never run in true pain! You don't want to risk injury. Getting your gait checked is a great idea also! Gayle


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