pain after running around the soleus

I recently started running again been at it about a month and running about a mile at a pretty slow pace but after my runs im getting pains around my soleus muscle quite severely so much so that for an hour or so after im struggling to walk without limping (if its called that when its in both legs) then it subsides slightly to just discomfort.

I first thought it was just my muscles not used to the work anymore but now im not so sure as i thought it would have abated after a month i have also tried running slower but that only makes it slightly less severe its quite frustrating as im wanting to join the Army and get a mile and a half under 9 mins but this is slowing me down as i dont know what it is any ideas?


  • I have problems with my soleus - I do a massive range of sports and find that it's worse after I do activities that involve sudden changes of direction (boxing and netball, for example). Mine is the sort of pain that doesnt stop me in my tracks but is pretty uncomfortable (and, like you, leaves me doing the two-legged limp afterwards). It can also sometimes be aggravated by doing too much too soon with running - if I overtrain I can barely walk for a day or so.

     I've found a couple of things seem to help (although I havent found a cure yet - would love to hear if you do!) - a lot of them are common sense but might be worth a try if you havent already done so:
    - I have sports massages on my legs to loosen things up - apparently a lot of runners have ridiculously tight leg muscles.
    - When possible, I warm the problem areas with a cloth dipped into hot water and wrung out for 5-10 mins and then massage tiger balm or ibuprofen gel into the area before exercise, particularly when it's cold.
    - I've also found that running wearing leg warmers really helps - this might look less out of place on a girl but does seem to make a difference and other members of my running club have now started doing this and noticing an improvement too. Maybe long socks would work in a similar way?

    Other than that, I'd just recommend the usual stuff - ibuprofen, frozen peas after sport etc. Hope some of this helps (and that somebody can come up with an instant fix for the problem asap!!) Good luck!

  • I would guess stretching, maybe heel drops as well as the against a wall one. Strengthening, heel raises and lots of them and as Amanda suggested massage (self massage before a run particularly).
  • TeuchterTeuchter ✭✭✭
    I had a lot of soleus  problems when I started running. Physio put it down to things:  1) Lack of stretching... the 'knee bend against the wall' one worked particularly well... and 2) crap footwear. Shoes that support over-pronation made a big difference for me. Hope that helps.
  • i think it will be footwear out of those 2 as i do lots of stretching as well as calf raises and exercises to strengthen the shin muscles
  • I have the same problem and got some advise from a physio who said to try and work on my balance to get all the muscles co-ordinating properly.  Calf stretches and soleal stretches as Teuchter said should help.  Ice after activity for 10-15 mins but dont stretch after using ice.  Give one legged calf raises a try as this will work on your balance and strength and get the footwear sorted but go to a specialised shop to have your gait/running analysed to get the right footwear.  Good Luck.
  • try compression socks and do strengthening exercises every day, that sorted mine out.
  • @ange unfortunately there isnt any specialist shops anywhere even close to where i am but will try the one legged calf raises
  • Good luck, hope ur sorted soon.

  • I had something very similar and infact all I have really been able to do is find out how to run around it rather then being controlled by it.

     I found it was the lower, inner part of my calf and it felt like a pinching ache. I don't know about you but I was/am sure it is muscular rather then a bone issue as its not sharp enough and aside from the first week when this happened, I had no bruising.

     I tried several things which helped.

    1. A different type of trainers. I had an overpronation which was a medium intensity. I bought the next level up for max support, I also bought Asics as I found they were even firmer. Foundation 8 or something? They made things feel easier anyway, not straight away but after about a month I noticed I was able to run again.

    2. Wearing a calf support. Runners Need sell these, your leg can get kinda sweaty underneath- even though its just your calf, so I'd advise wearing talc underneath. They are a blue velcro thing you slap on as tight as you feel supportive and for me at least, it helps.

    3. Running uphill. Now I used to run on a flat level, about 12km/h on flat and the first 5 mins were agony. I got some relief after that (though it never fully went away) but would suddenly reappear after about 15 mins. I'd have to stop, move on to something else (I was at the gym). I now run at a slower 10km/h and on a gradient of anything up to level 10 out of 15 on the treadmill. Level 5 isn't too bad and I can run for longer but if your after the cardio effect, go for level 10 and 10km/h- and NO leg pain! I think this works as the incline is such that it reduces the impact you have when landing each foot on the floor. Its not going to resolve the problem but if you wanted to carry on running and found the pain held you back, this is a way I found around it.

    4. Other then that, rest! I did some research on my leg issue. It was either a posterior shin splint or tendonitis. Either condition required rest to mend the problem, at best flat out tv on the sofa type resting with basic walking to keep the circulation going, at worst doing things like swimming or cycling which did not put the same pressure on the muscle tear.

  • from what ive read up on it seems like it may be some form of  tendonitis as it feels close to the bone gonna rest it for a few weeks and see how it goes thx for your help
Sign In or Register to comment.