persistent shin/calf pain

Hi there


My names Stuart and im a relative beginner to running, i started about 4 months ago. For the first 2 months i was easing myself into running, just doing around 1.5 miles per evening after work and slowly building myself up each week, after about 3 months i started regularly running 3-4 miles each night and i was absolutely loving every minute of it and then suddenly out of the blue i noticed a niggling pain in what i initially thought was the lower centre of my calf muscle, now after trying to pinpoint the pain it appears to be coming from the lower inside of my calf on my left leg, its a hard one to try and explain but after i run i get home and i can barely put weight on my leg for about 20 minutes and then it starts to get better.

Im wondering if anyone has had a similar problem as its extremely frustrating as i have had to stop running for 2 weeks so far and try and rest the leg in the hope that it will work itself out.

im also wondering could it be the shoes im using, i have extremely flat arches, infact you may say i have flat feet and unfortunately i dont know of any good running shops so i picked up a pair of reebok realflex shoes and kinda hoped for the best and for 2 months seemed ideal but maybe the shoes are the cause of it all


anyway if anyone has experience in this injury or knows what it may be id really appreciatte some help and advice as i really do want to get back out on the road again


slightly update, ive been reading alot into shinsplints or stress fractures, would either of these be a possibility?



Stuart from Sunny Wales


  • Hi Stuart,  definitely go to a specialist store who can analyse your gait & get you fitted with the right running shoes.  You may need some kind of arch support, they will be able to advise you on this.

    Whilst your injury is healing, concentrate on core work at the gym; abs, back, glutes, etc.  Core strength is key for running & will help protect your lower legs from injury.  When you get back to running again, start with three runs a week, not on consecutive days.  Include cycling, swimming & especially gym/core work on the other days & one rest day per week.

  • Cheers for the reply

    I have near enough flat feet and im guessing that im over pronating quite a bit which is probably the cause of my lower leg problem, i cycle to work daily, doing around 14 miles a day, 5 days a week, im now icing my leg 3 times a day for 15 minutes whilst using some ibuprofen gel , i just hope i can get back to running, it became something of a passion to me if that doesnt sound to soppy!

    I have now located a store in cardiff called become and run, seems to have had good reviews so ill try and get down there after new year and get properly fitted for a new pair of shoes
  • Cardiff run and become is a good running shop by reputation... and was fine when I used them once (about 7 years ago though!)

    Your reeboks don't support your arch and there is probably a lot of sideways motion of your shin with every footstrike. Probably not good.  But I think the word 'probably' should always be used, because there is no definitive answer to these things...  some people insist that support shoes aren't necessary for flat feet.  (personally, I think that there are so many variables, that you can never be definitive, but most people would be better with supporting footwear.)

    Shin splints is definitely a possibility.  2 months is a classic time for it to manifest itself. Usually on the lower, inner part of the calf.  One reason is that your heart and lungs tend to pick up running fitness quite quickly (making you over enthusastic)... but the bones, ligaments and muscles accumulate damage as the adjust more slowly to the repetitive impact of the runner.  So certainly keep reading those shin splint articles, and ease gently back into running as Elizabeth suggests.  Good luck.

  • cheers mate, all good info for me to digest, im definately determined to carry on, ill go along to the cardiff shop and see what they suggest in terms of my current aches and pains and what shoe might be ideal, as i said, im flat footed and im guessing these reeboks arent doing me any favours

    cant wait to get back out on the road again

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