Why are my knees hurting?? (Read 586 times)


    I started running this past August, and have been gradually increasing my distance every week. 2 weeks ago today I did my first half marathon. During the half marathon, my knees were hurting pretty bad the last 2 miles. But the pain went away almost as soon as I finished the race. Or maybe it was just my legs were hurting so much, I didn't notice the pain in my knees.


    But ever since the half my knees seem to start to hurt at the 5 km mark. I did 10K yesterday and the pain would come and go. The funny part is doing the half marathon it was my left knee that was giving me the problems. Now it seems to be my right knee. Go figure. Anyway as soon as I finished my run yesterday i got an excruciating pain in boh my knees for about 30 seconds. Then my knees were fine. Last night they were a little sore, and now today they are 100% fine. No pain whatsover.


    I am assuming its just the muscles in my knees stretching, and still recovering from the half marathon??







      My guess is it's "growing pains" as you start running, combined with your weekly mileage not really being enough of a base for half marathons (not to say you can't do them--but they will be harder & more painful than they would be if you had a better base).  I did a similar thing to you where I started running in Oct 2010 and ran my first half in December that year on fairly low weekly miles (at the time I was still doing run/walk intervals which I think probably made things easier), and I remember having on and off knee pain for quite a while in those early days--probably my first ~9 months or so of running.  I think you will find as you continue running and build up your mileage your knee issues will go away.  I don't have any knee pain anymore unless I do a trail race with a lot of steep downhills.  


      The other thing you might try would be to slow down a bit--it looks like you run many of your training runs at a much faster pace than you ran your half marathon, so I wonder if you're running easy enough in training.  If you try to speed through all your training runs that will also increase your chances of getting injured.  Every now and then if you want to do a faster run that's fine, and as you become a more experienced runner you should include some speed work in your training, but most of your miles should be easy.  

      Ostrich runner

        People only have a finite number of steps they can take on their knees. Each person has their own number, and there isn't any way to know that number in advance. Once they're used up, they're gone. Probably you used too many of your steps in your race. 


          You ran a half marathon on a base of 10 to 20 miles per week for only a couple of months.  That, in itself, is an accomplishment.  A more realistic base is at least four months of 30 mile weeks.  

            Congrats on the 1/2 marathon! Could be too much, too soon, too fast, but great start! Do you keep track of mileage on your shoes? My issue starting was shin splints, and when they hint at coming back, it means my shoes need to be replaced. Can be anywhere from 350-600 miles for me, everyone is different.

            Marathons are habit-forming...

            "I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength."

            Philippians 4:13, NLT


              A brief perusal of your training log leads me to the following -


              1 - You ran a half marathon off of a fairly small base of running.  Your tendons / ligaments etc are not yet accustomed to the stress of running.  I would recommend backing off the frequency of your runs for the next few weeks and make sure that the pain goes away.  After that, make sure that spend at least a few months just running easy.  You need to build a bigger base or you will continue to have injury problems.


              2 - Your pacing for runs - particularly recently - looks pretty aggressive given your half marathon time.  Most of your running should be done at a truly easy pace to allow for good aerobic development.  Your typical recent easy run pace is faster than mine and I just ran a 1:37 half.  You really need to slow it down to get the maximum training benefit.  I did the same thing when I resumed running about 4 years ago and noticed recently that my easy pace has actually gotten slower since I started training again.    My race times have fallen steadily as well.  Slow and steady is the way to go.   Speed can come later after you have a solid base.


              That being said.....I am by no means an expert.  There are many here who know FAR more than I do.  This is just my two cents based on what has worked for me.


              Good luck.

               201x goals: run a bunch....race some.....repeat...

              A Saucy Wench

                Back off mileage and speed for awhile to recover and then re ramp slower and more conservatively.  I am going to agree with pretty much everything JML said.  Especially the too fast part.  When my HM  was 1:46, my normal "easy"  training pace was around 9:45-10:15 min/mile.   Which suggests both that you arent giving your body true easy runs and also your HM was beyond your training limit right now. 


                The come and go and come and go of the pain suggests that there probably isnt anything seriously wrong yet.  These are the warning signs to tell you to back off and give your body time to adjust before you press on.


                Good luck!

                I have become Death, the destroyer of electronic gadgets


                "When I got too tired to run anymore I just pretended I wasnt tired and kept running anyway" - dd, age 7


                  Thanks everyone. Looks like I need to slow my runs down and not push my pace as much.





                    According to all my fat non running friends the answer is running. You has better stop that and embrace the holiday season, eat, gain weight, and ruin your knees even worse.

                      I would do what the others have recommended and start doing cross training specified towards "injury prevention for knees". Like others said it's probably not to late to go into a prevention mode.

                      Old , Ugly and slow

                        Is the pain in your muscles or your joints. I would only worry about joint pain.

                        first race sept 1977 last race sept 2007


                        2014goals   1300  miles  , 190 pounds , deadlift 400 touch my toes