Knee pain whilst running

Hi Im training for the london marathon which is 4 weeks away and I've recently been experiencing knee pain during my long runs. The pain is dull and above the knee cap. It gradually gets worse and then I stop to stretch and continue. When I start again I have to slightly adapt my style due to the ache and then I'm able to run normally for a while before having to repeat the whole process again. Last week I managed 19miles and yesterday I got to 14 miles. Has anyone experienced this? How can I treat it to enable me to continue? I brought my trainers from the meet the experts expo in London back in January where I had a gain analysis and was advised on these trainers. With only 4 weeks to go I'm really concerned I'm not going to be able to run. I'm due to do a finally long run next weekend of 21 miles but am concerned if I do it I might make things worse. I've done 5 long runs over 13 miles, 19 being my longest last weekend. Is that enough training to get me through or should I grit my teeth and do my final long run? Any advice would be appreciated.


  • Does the knee hurt all the time or only when running? But whatever, the only real answer is rest; try a week off and then run as far as you can next weekend, as soon as it starts to hurt back off or stop if you can. Ideally you need those long runs... but remember that a marathon is a mind game. If you think that not doing 21 miles is a problem then it will be a BIG problem that will become bigger as the race progresses! Ignoring pain will make it worse and will result in a longer lay off. You can run 26 miles, not being able to follow your training routine to the letter means you may need to be more realistic with your pace. Getting your pace wrong in the first half of the race will destroy your race quicker than missing the odd run. Don't panic! You will be fine!

  • Stick to shorter runs from now on.  It could just be an overuse injury from building up too quickly.  You've done a 19 miler, which is enough to get you round on the day.  I've done marathons with my longest run being only 16 miles when injury has prevented me from getting in the 2 x 20 milers that my plan required.

  • Good luck in the marathon I will be there as well for the first time,  cant say much on the knee no expert but I have had some IT band issues that has given me some pain on the outside of the knee and found taping helped (rock tape) and using a roller I have no idea how the tape works but it worked for me.   

  • Thanks everyone for the advice. I didn't run this week and stuck to cycling to maintain fitness.

    Knee feels good but think I'm going to take your advice and bank my 19 as my longest and stick to shorter but faster runs between now and the marathon.
  • Hi rakhee,

    I've got a knee problem too but very stupidly ran 22 miles with and now I've quite possibly ruined my chance of running london. So definitely take 19 as your longest don't push it between now and the 21st and if you feel pain stop, and rest up! You've done the right thing by cycling and resting.

    Best of luck, enjoy your day

  • Hi Katy

    I'm sorry to hear about your knee. If you can get to a physio and remember to RICE lots along with anti inflammatories.

    I went out today and the pain came back so I stopped after 5.5 miles, going to continue with RICE and hopefully be able to run again by the end of the week.

    Let me know how you get on with your knee.
  • Thanks for letting me (us) know; it is always good to get a bit of feed back!


    I also use joint supplements and joint care gel.


  • Hi Rakhee,

    I know the marathon has come and gone but thought I would give my 2 cents.

    The question I would ask is why is this happening? What is the root cause? The pain is happening when you run, but many people run long distances and don't have any problems so to remove this we need to work out what is going on specifically in your body which is causing you these problems.

    Remember, pain is the body's way of telling us that something is not right. Often when people have knee pain it's because the person's posture has shifted from natural alignment. Stand in front of the mirror and see if your feet and also your knee caps point straight ahead or do they face in or outwards at an angle. 

    They should point straight ahead. Them being at an angle is often the cause of knee pain as it means the joint is not opening and closing naturally when running and can strain the surrounding ligaments, muscles and meniscus in the knee.

    Muscles determine the position of the bones so it might indicate that there is a slight imbalance in your hip muscles which ultimately position the knee. Or it could even be a problem with how your feet strike the ground, and the chain reaction it has up your leg.

    I'm a Postural Alignment Specialist in the Egoscue Method. Its a form of Postural Alignment Therapy which gets your body back to it's natural alignment so it can function pain free. 

    I'd be more than happy to give you a free half hour postural assessment and tell you what i think is going on with you. No strings attached. If at the end of the assessment i run through my findings and what i suggest and you agree, feel free to book a session with me, and i can run through a series of exercises that i think would help solve the problem and if for any reason after the half hour if you don't fancy it, then no worries either.

    You can find out more on my website

    Take care and if you have any questions feel free to ask.



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