Calf pain (Read 385 times)

    I started running in July using a c25k program 3-4 times a week . it FELT great until 5 weeks ago when my calf got tight and ended up limping around for  a week. It did get better and ran my first 5k in 30:13 4 weeks ago. Had a lot if tightness and pain for the next couple of weeKs.


    finally felt better and tried a run this past Friday. Felt a little sore thru the run but managed to get thru a 3 miler.tried again yesterday but couldn't get two blocks. 


    my question is .......is it common to have pain that mainly goes away when I walk.....I can feel a little soreness but not so bad really but when I run its awful. Ended up with a slight case of shin splints too yesterday,I think from how my gait was affected .


    the soreness and tightness did start about the same time I joined a health club and did treadmill a couple times a week. I started running in Brooks Ravenna 3's and recently fitted in Brooks Adrenaline RTS 12's at my LRS. Only ran in the adrenalines the last two runs.


    thanks for reading.


    i am another that jumped over from rWOL. Thanks use having us!

    First Race

    Hot Chocolate 5K Chicago November 4, 2012 30:17

    Second Race

    Penguin in the Park 5K Decatur Illinois March 23,2013 27:08



      I think that this occasion is what people are referring to when they say listen to your body. I have no idea what is wrong, but something isn't right. You don't know what it is. My advice is to stop running and figure it out. You may just need a foam roller, but even when the solution is simple, you can make it worse if you keep doing the same thing. As an answer to your question, yes, it is common to have tightness that goes away when you warm up, but it isn't OK to run in pain.


      I hope I don't come off smug. I have exacerbated several injuries by running when it wasn't wise to do so. It is hard to figure out, but, generally, a young, healthy person should not have any pain when they run.

      2017 Goals:  Qualify for Boston 2018 at Boston in 2017 & sub 1:39:00 at the Revel Canyon Half in November 2017.

      Over 45 PR's:

      5K - 21:21

      Half - 1:39:49

      Full - 3:33.47


        I agree with Linda.  You need to listen to your body.  I had a lot of issues with sore/tight calves when I first started running.  For me, foam rolling, using the stick, and stretching my calves after I run has taken care of it.  When my calves were sore I did those three things plus after a mile or so of slow running (warm up) I would stop and lightly stretch my calves.  I've also added some weight training exercises to strengthen my calves and ankles.  


        If it was me I would try the things I mentioned above and cut back on my overall miles and intensity for a week or so and see how they feel.  If they feel worse I would stop running and work on foam rolling and stretching.  If they feel better give it a few extra days and then start increasing the miles and intensity while still doing the stretching and foam rolling.  I'm good at listening to my body though, if you're not then running while sore might not be a good idea.  


        Good luck! 



        “I go to nature to be soothed and healed, and to have my senses put in order.” John Burroughs

          Thanks, I really appreciate the advice . And No smugness taken.....I REALLY enjoy the running even more than I thought I could. I just need to back off and take care of this.

          First Race

          Hot Chocolate 5K Chicago November 4, 2012 30:17

          Second Race

          Penguin in the Park 5K Decatur Illinois March 23,2013 27:08



          Skirt Runner

            I have trouble with my calves too. I have been running on a regular basis since August. My pain sounds different than yours though. I don't have a general soreness all through running, but instead get really intense calf cramps/extreme tightness that comes on very quickly usually after 1-1.5 miles. It used to be every time I ever ran over a mile, but now it's less frequent.  I took advice from the RWOL crowd and started warming up before my runs (I used to hit the ground running as soon as I walked out of my apartment). I now take about a mile and power walk for about a quarter mile, and then alternate power walking and jogging for the remaining approximate 3/4 of the mile, then stretch lightly. I started using calf compression sleeves which help a little. Now, I noticed the problem only occurs when I am running any faster than my easiest pace. My long, easy pace runs have generally been fine, but shorter faster runs and races I have had the cramping problem ("faster" and "racing" for me is still pretty slow....my easy pace is 11:30-12 mm and my fastest 5K was an average pace of just less than 11mm....but apparently that 30 sec or so speed increase elicits the cramping that I used to get every time I ran over a mile). I can't offer much advice, but I wanted to say I relate to calf issues, and I am interested in seeing what others advise you.

            PRs:   5K- 28:16 (5/5/13)      10K- 1:00:13 (10/27/13)    4M- 41:43 (9/7/13)   15K- 1:34:25  (8/17/13)    10M- 1:56:30 (4/6/14)     HM- 2:20:16 (4/13/14)     Full- 5:55:33 (11/1/15)


            I started a blog about running :) Check it out if you care to

              Stretching is the key to avoid calf issues. But the probelm is you should never stretch an injured muscle. So you have to take it easy, and stretch very lightly after your runs (work on both the gastroc and soleus, which means the straight-legged stretch and the bent-legged stretch) Once gentle stretching has eliminated the issue, you should move to eccentric calf stretches (you'll find on youtube) These are more intense, so I wold go easy on these at the beginning. I have found them effective so far for Achilles tendomitis, but they work for calves as well. 

              Personal bests (bold = this year): 5K - 23:27 / 5M - 38:42 / 10K - 49:31 (track) / 10M - 1:24:26 / HM - 1:51:17 / M - 3:58:58

              Next races: NYC Marathon, Nov 2014