suspected ITBS and a marathon in 6 weeks

I'm currently training for a marathon and have over the last week developed symptoms that seem to indicate ITBS image

 It started on Tuesday I only did just over 3 miles but I could feel a slight niggling and clicking sensation in the outside of the knee, same happened on Wednesday.

On Friday i went out set for a 9 mile run, I was going a bit faster than earlier in the week and didn't feel any problems until at 7 miles I had to stop and redo my lace. When I tried to run again after the stop I had really sharp pain in my knee when i tried to bend it  and I couldn't run!

I had no pain on walking though so I strided home and kept trying to run, after about 100m the pain had subsided and I ran home pain free image

On saturday I ran 19 miles, again there was no pain whilst running but when I had to stop to cross roads etc... I had the same stabbing pain in the outside of my knee when i tried to start off again, which again gradually subsided!

 Does this sound like ITBS or something else? I have had new shoes 5 weeks ago (wondering if they could be the problem) and I wear orthotics, I have had video gait analysis that shows a neutral gait. It is very hilly where I live but this hasn't caused problems before!

It is aching when I bend it walking today so obviously getting worse image


  • Pain on the outside of the knee is usually a good sign of ITBS. But it is worth seeing a physio to get a proper diagnosis.

    Without trying to alarm you I have been suffering it for 6 weeks and 3 days now, but I would add that in my case it was caused by my new shoes which were completely wrong for me (which I only realised this week) so every time I tried to run after my initial injury, it flared up again and I probably put my recovery back as a result. I know of people recovering in 3-4 weeks (although they did need to build up mileage slowly after that).

    Rest, see a physio to try to establish what exactly you're suffering, the underlying cause (could be the new shoes, could be something else biomechanical?) and follow his advice.

    If it is ITBS, get yourself a foam roller to help loosen the area.
  • people keep talking about foam rollers where do you get them from?

    (still can't seem to get links properly clickable for some reason). I went for a 15x45 one because 15x90 is a bit ridiculously long for home use and you probably won't need one that long.
  • I've been through an IT Band injury and it was bad and continued to get worse. I started using a foam roller and keeping the IT band stretched and loose and that was how I finally got rid of it. Seeking out a good sports physical therapists could help expedite the recovery but regardless give the foam roller a try. I found a great article about what can cause ITBS and how to treat using foam roller and other techniques at this article t
    Good luck!
  • Buy a pattsrap or Chopat strap to put on when you try to start up again.

     I had this trouble 6 weeks before my first marathon, and got round run/ walking , wearing a chopat strap, having spent most of the preceding month pool running, or run/ walking.

    I finished in 4:20

    It was my shoes- overly controlling.

  • I'm wondering whether my orthotics are too controlling, I had them 9 years ago before I did distance running and at the time the podiatrist built the right one up slightly however i saw another podiatrist earlier this year (for some non running orthotics) who said that I didn't have unequal leg lengths! I do have a third pair of ridgid orthotics that I wear in my off road shoes and racers that I might try instead, the only reason I don't wear them on the road is that I thought the others would offer more support over distance, they also have a silly full length leather insole attached to them that I thought might cause blisters!
  • I was going to post a very similar message!

    I've got less than 5 weeks to my marathon (I'm in NZ and running the Rotorua Marathon on May 1). My training has been going great until yesterday when at home I noticed my knee was a bit sore (no run on Sunday and the previous day was only a 10km as it's a recovery week).

    I got up this morning for a tempo run and didn't even make it out of the door as my knee was constantly clicking. Went back to bed. It's still sore now as I type this.

    I'll take a look at the foam roller exercises as I have a roller at home (usually use it on my shins and calves).

    I have my fingers crossed for us both!


  • well I iced it straight after the long run, rested for a couple of days but slapped on volterol and took ibuprofen regularly. Went out for a 6m run yesterday and no pain on that side, not even a niggle, very strange!!! image
  • That's great news Touie2 - very pleased for you.

    I'm suffering a bit with ITBs - having picked it up 1.5 weeks ago.

    Physio recommended ibuprofen regularly, lots and lots of stretching & 5 days off running.. I've got some volerol myself - how often did you use it out of interest? 

  • Dear All,

    Ileotibial band syndrome is common in runners, I arises when the ITB rubbs across the lateral femoral epicondyle about a hands breadth above where it attaches to the shin bone (Gurdys Tubercle). Constant rubbing causes a bursitis (inflammation of the sac between the tendon and the epicondyle). Stretching the ITB, fascia lata and the TFL muscle unit takes some of the pressure off the ITB. Changing insoles can have a similar effect.  The first course of action is to confirm the diagnosis. History, Examination and occasionally special investigations.  Treatment is conservative or conservative. Run if anyone offers you surgery. I try physiotherapy or SMT for my patietns with a 2 week course of NSAIDS.

    As a final treatment (if all else fails and the VLM is calling) I offer an aspiration and injection of cortisone (did one last night for a patient). THis usually works really well.

    Hope this helps.

    John Hardy

  • JC_Runner wrote (see)

    Physio recommended ibuprofen regularly, lots and lots of stretching & 5 days off running.. I've got some volerol myself - how often did you use it out of interest? 

    I put some on in the morning, at lunch (I have lunch at home each day) and again in the evening.

    I did wear different orthotics when I ran yesterday so that might have made a difference too!

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