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MRSTIGHTWAD SparkPoints: (1,172)
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6/1/13 12:08 A

Once I get my warmup done, I will stretch to loosen things up a bit. Then I hit the weights, followed by more stretching. My post workout stretch is more intensive. Regardless, keeping everything loose is key to preventing serious injuries.

What's your warmup routine like?

DETOX55 SparkPoints: (1,380)
Fitness Minutes: (2,987)
Posts: 124
5/31/13 4:52 A

I've had a couple of major calf injuries over the years...

Tightness like you are experiencing is a warning sign, for sure.

My advice is find a good physio and go seek preventative treatment before you rupture something.

It took me 3 months to recover from one calf injury...which REALLY sucked!!

Calf tightness can be caused by a multitude of reasons including:

- tight hip flexors, hamstrings and glutes (sounds like in your case this could be true given the sort of weights you're lifting with compound muscles)

- ankle issues (caused by poor running technique; don't worry, most people have to be taught proper technique by a pro!)

- lack of muscle development (sounds like you need to strengthen your calves for sure; try calf hops using a step and one leg calf raises against a wall to see fast improvements)

- ligament and tendon issues (the pain you have may not be muscle pain at all; rather related to surrounding tissues).

Good luck and let us know how you get on...:-)

RENATARUNS SparkPoints: (4,367)
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5/30/13 6:10 P

Blibbity is mixing cause and effect.

Anyway -- running puts a lot of stress on calf muscles when they're not used to it, even if you've done it before. Walking uphill does exactly the same thing, but less so, so makes a good substitute for running when your muscles just aren't quite ready to go yet. Don't push it once it starts to hurt or you could injure yourself.

REGINA_PHALANGE SparkPoints: (17,659)
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Posts: 681
5/30/13 3:52 P

How long have you been running for? I see that you've run in the past, but if you've picked it up again recently, it might be because of trying to do too much too soon. I had this problem when I picked up running again (even when I was just running 1-2 miles a couple of times a week), and I had to reduce my mileage a lot. Cross training should be helping that, though, so I'm not so sure that's the problem.

If you have been running for a while, I'll jump on the foam roller bandwagon. It might be what you need to stretch everything out. A final thought: It also might be worth it to record yourself running - you might be doing something strange in your movement that you're not even aware of.

KYLAR_STERN SparkPoints: (22,234)
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5/30/13 3:30 P

"When you weight train, what are you doing specifically for your calves?"

For legs in the weight room, I do squats and deadlifts on alternate lifting days. And about every other lifting day (3 days a week plan) I do those calf extensions under the leg press machine as isolation work since they fell behind

Yes, I stretch afterwords. Not before tho as I feel that led to a minor injury when I used to do that

@those that say shoes-
Man, I really don't want to have to get new shoes. They're so expensive. The ones I have are really comfortable on my feet and support well. I put probably 150? miles on them last summer if I had to guess, and maybe ten so far this year. I do have some older tennis shoes that I lift and walk around in everyday. I use those for runs whenever conditions are a little wet to keep my running shoes good and also like you metioned to rotate how I wear them and not develop bad habits by relying on a shoes uniqueness or something.

I do like the idea of a roller tho. That just looks like it would feel amazing. (especially on the hamstrings after deadlift day lol) Will be looking into that I think. Thanks.

ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (197,121)
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Posts: 27,076
5/30/13 2:39 P


If your shoes are close to a year old, that may be the cause of your calf pain. A general rule of thumb for runners is that they change their shoes every 3-4 months or 300 miles. How many miles a week have you been running ? If you're over 300+ miles, it's time to change your shoes.

I can trace most pains I have right back to my shoes when they start wearing out. In fact, it's time for me to ditch a pair of shoes I've been wearing too long too.

Also, one thing you might consider trying is using more than one pair when you run. Have 2-3 dedicated pairs of running shoes. Rotate them. wear one pair one week and another pair the next so that the support doesn't wear out as quickly. When I was running, I used two pairs of shoes to make them last longer.

And do you do any rolling ? If not, rolling with a foam roller will help.

AMOHAME2 Posts: 1,557
5/30/13 1:04 P

I have had this problem in the past. It's possible it's because your calf muscles are tight. Do you stretch them after you workout? Have you tried stopping during a run to stretch them? This sometimes works for me, although what works best is always "rolling out" my muscles. Get yourself a foam roller or "Tiger Tail" or other muscle roller - the Tiger Tail looks like a foam-padded rolling pin. It hurts while you're doing it but it works wonders for the calves.
Also, a year is a pretty long time to have a pair of running shoes. I replace mine every 3-4 months, though I do run about 40-50 miles per week. It sounds like you're not running huge distances, but shoes should be replaced every 300-500 miles. Just because your shoes still look fine, doesn't mean they're not the problem.

SONICB Posts: 4,378
5/30/13 1:00 P

Distance running (even distances as short as 3 miles!) is known for breaking down muscles rather than building them. You might want to consider switching up your running routine to include sprints at different intensities (HIIT) to help build leg muscles. (Try googling images of distance/marathon runners and sprinters, and you can see the difference in their body types!)

Edited by: SONICB at: 6/1/2013 (15:09)
MRSTIGHTWAD SparkPoints: (1,172)
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Posts: 80
5/30/13 12:49 P

When you weight train, what are you doing specifically for your calves?

KYLAR_STERN SparkPoints: (22,234)
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Posts: 1,053
5/30/13 12:36 P

I got the shoes only a year ago and only ever use them for running. They look in fine shape, even for the strict standards of running shoes

Can't imagine its overtraining, not doing near as much as I did last summer. Lifting 3 times a week and training Bjj and running 2-4 miles once or twice a week each is all

DRAGONCHILDE SparkPoints: (61,313)
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5/30/13 11:40 A

Hmm... when was the last time you replaced your shoes? The more you run, the quicker they run out. Some estimates I've read state that you should replace them every 6 months or so many miles (don't have that figure handy.)

Overtraining, maybe? How often are you running?

KYLAR_STERN SparkPoints: (22,234)
Fitness Minutes: (23,806)
Posts: 1,053
5/30/13 11:29 A

They get really sore at about mile three. I have good shoes, and I don't think my stride is super wonkey or anything. When I lost the fat, it was like I dropped every spec of fat off my calves so I look like I have toothpick legs from the knee down and linebacker legs in the thighs (can squat well over 300 lbs. still)

I've even been doing those stupid isolation lifts like calf extensions to try and get the muscle back in my calves a little quicker. Not sure if this is a reason for the soreness or not, or if it's because those muscles are disproportionally weaker than the rest of me, or if it's just something unrelated entirely.

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