Grade 1 Calf Strain


While running 10k this morning, I felt a slight calf strain about 2k into the run. I stopped, stretched and continued but the pain increased slightly. At 5k, I decided to plough on and finish the 10k. My right calf felt tight initially, so I did lots of stretching, but now it's giving slight pain when walking. How long should I wait before returning to running?

And could this have been caused by overtraining? I've started to increase distances, which led to an ankle sprain that put me out of action for a week, after which I went straight into my normal weekly milage. Is it too much too soon that's causing these injuries? Would cross training help?


Thanks, Niall


  • Niall calves can be tempermental so be careful. Give it a week then try an easy run, maybe 3 or 4 miles. See how it feels for that. If you get through that run handy enough then run every 2nd day for a week thereafter. If all goes well the week after that you can return to running every day(if thats what you do). But leave the speedwork for 3 weeks. Roll out your calves on a foam roller for now. Dont stretch them out for a week, then start gradual easy stretches, nothing too dramatic. 

    I dont think youre doing too much too soon, like I said calves are tempermental. What you need to do though is strengthen up with loaded calve raises. You could do 5 sets of 20 reps every 2 or 3 days. Best way to them is on a smith machine, and go one leg at a time. You can also do them with dumbells or kettlebells. But do strengthen up because they'll just keep going on you otherwise.

  • Thank you for the advice, Eoin. Definitely going to ease back into it this time and try some strengthening exercises!

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