Hi guys and Eric - I was on week 8 of the foundation program last week and knee pain in my left knee on top of the knee struck me down. I've been running for 7 years and usually fast (never zone 2) and never, ever had any issues with my knees.

I have rolled, massaged, sport massaged, and put heat on the knee, it is starting to go away but still painful. I'm now out for a week or so which is frustrating.

I have read that a few others have had this problem with their knee so I looked up some studies and there is a correlation between slow running and runner's knee because of the many more steps involved in slow running.

If any one has any recommendations of how to recover and what to do when I can run again please let me know. I'm keen do run my mile test as soon as I can!

A frustrated, immobile runner :) 

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two years ago i dealt with a minor injury (ITB) and i approached it the same way you are, but couldn't rid myself of the pain. finally, i came across an internet sports science writer out of Canada, who claimed to have a medical background, but i don't remember his specific credentials. i did read one of his 10 page articles on sports related injuries and his mantra was this: athletes need to start treating soft tissue injuries as if they were fractures. bottom line... rest your body.

trust me. i tried the rollers, the massages, the stretches, etc. and none of it worked. finally, i decided it was time to take the writer's advice and gave myself 6 weeks rest. yes, i was very disappointed having to think about taking time off from what i loved to do, but viola! it worked. 

like i mentioned before, that was two years ago and i haven't dealt with an injury since. it was also around this time that i searched out Eric's book and program. i figured if i was getting injured while running i must be doing something wrong. anyway, i took Eric's advice and for the first FULL year following my injury i ran three days a week, religiously. running slow and really focusing in on technique and form. in February of this year, which was exactly one year of the slow running, i started the program that was laid out in his book. i executed every step running 4-6 days a week. i just completed the program this week and i am still injury free. i'm stronger, faster, and more aware than ever.

try resting your body for the six weeks and see what happens. 

good luck.


Hi Rachel - I would continue to massage your quad, especially your sartorius and then stretch the quad.  Many times, the knee pain is coming from quad tightness, that is pulling on the knee causing it to track poorly. So just be sure to add the quad stretch to what you are doing and see how this helps.

Hi Rachel I had a similar experience to you. I transitioned from a road runner to a trail runner and never ran as slow as zone 2. I did the program you are doing and lik d it so much I went to personal training with Eric. I also just recently moved to a mountain area from NJ and was doing a lot of big hills and got knee pain from all the downhills. You have to stretch after the rolling. I learned from the many years of running that whatever hurts is usually never the problem. It's somewhere else causing it. I rolled quads and also calves for several weeks while still training for a trail marathon and never missed a workout or backed off. I did the stretching right after the rolling. I did the marathon and did well and did not have the knee pain. I also swear by the stability disk and swissball exercises at least 2-3 times a week. I am 100% committed to Eric's training and advice.

Thanks Joe! It's been two weeks now since I've taken a break because of the knee... stretching does help a lot but discomfort comes back pretty quick. Will try a 10 min run with some really good rolling and stretching before and after and see how I go... will post the result later today!


Hi Rach,

I'm actually a slow runner, training more for endurance than speed and I've not had any knee problems in the past two or three years. Do you know what your running cadence is? If your cadence is too low, then your ground contact time is longer and there's more stress on the knee. Also, are you overstriding? These are things that I noticed when I started to have knee issues.  The knee issues went away when I shortened my stride length and increased my cadence.


Hey Jay - I don't think I overstride but how do I know if I am ? Are there any cues to feel or see when running?

Hey Rach, when I'm running I usually take a quick peek downward to see where my foot is landing in relation to my body. I can tell I'm overstriding when my foot is landing far ahead of the rest of my body. When that happens, it's almost like applying the brakes and the stress of that motion transfers to my knee.

I have a bit of a biomechanical issue in that one of hip bones is just slightly higher than the other so I tend to overstride with one leg.  If I feel a little aching in my knee while running, I'll look down to see if that foot is overstriding, and will shorten my stride.


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