Calf Muscle tear - anyone had this 4 weeks away from marathon

I'm not panicking, seems being injured is all part of this fabulous experience!.  I did this on Tuesday, have not ran since, and it already feels so much better.  Can walk almost pain free.  Physio gave me advice over the phone, because I've been seeing him since Jan for my shin splints.  He is running his 13th marathon and has doubled up as a coach for me.  He has advised not to do any running this weekend as I did have a 21 miler planned.  He said absolutely no way as it's Do or Die at this stage.  He has advised that when I am totally pain free and can do calf raises as good as I can on my other leg, then to continue running....he did say 10 to 15 days recovery is the norm.  He suggests building back up and to absolutely not run any further than 12 or 15 miles.  This is such a bummer as I was hoping for a 20 miler for a confidence boost.  I've never ran a marathon before.  I have managed the following lately in my schedule 20 miles, 16 miles 13, 17 however my last 20 was ages ago.  Am I still going to complete this marathon without pushing out another 20?  My phsyio seems to think so.  I'd be interested to hear what others have done.  I know my main objective is to get around injury free....will a 15 miler really prepare me instead of that confidence booster 20?  Thanks guys!


  • Overstress the calf before it's fully healed and you risk a worse tear and not being able to start your marathon, let alone complete it.  Listen to your physio. 

    It is possible to complete a marathon off a longest run of 15 miles. Not ideal and definitely makes it harder and slower but do-able. I have actually completed a marathon off a longest run of 12 miles but definitely wouldn't recommend it; there was a lot of walking involved and it hurt a lot image

    You've said yourself that the last 20 miler would be a confidence booster so start working on the positve mental attitude and telling yourself that you can and will do it.

    Good luck

  • Thanks Trogs, good advice. I will remain positive.

  • you would be really silly to do a long run this weekend or before the day....I wouldn't even think about doing any short runs at all until you are pain free......

  • When my calf went, I was stepping off a tube train onto the platform and it felt as though someone had thrown a cricket ball at my calf, which is apparently a classic symptom. I could hardly make it to my train. I was off running for weeks, with lots of calf raises etc. 

    Obviously I don't know how bad your injury is but I would agree with seren nos: dont run, and preferably keep off your feet, this weekend at the very least. Yes it would have been good to do a 20miler but you shouldn't try - what you need to be able to do is rest as much as possible so that you can complete the 26.2miles when the day comes.



  • Pipski -  I've just had a similar concern, 5 weeks before Barcelona my left calf went, saw my physio rested and iced for a week, started running again gently building up but when I tried some MP miles a full week after it had felt OK it went pop and I could hardly walk on it, Another 2 weeks of recovery and no running. Tried a  test run the week before the marathon and no concerns.  I completed Barcelona last Sunday and calf was fine with a time I was very happy with given circumstances.  You must let the tear heal completely and then only slow running as potentially there will still be a weakness there, the important thing is to get to the start line.

  • +1 for all those suggesting you don't attempt to run again until completely healed, and then keep the mileage low.

    I have a similar injury at the moment - I rested for 10 days; the calf felt absolutely fine after just 7, but on my first run out it popped again after only a mile.

    I'm now giving it another 10 days to 2 weeks before running on it again.

    Better to get to the start line, if a little less prepared than you'd like, than be out injured all together.

    Best of luck!



  • GladragsGladrags ✭✭✭

    Pip - deep breath! imageThis is the 3rd of 4th thread about your calf in as many days? Everyone's very happy to be supportive but you do keep asking the same question!

    Your physio sounds very sensible. If you value his opinion then follow it - by double checking him on here all you keep doing is confirming that he is right (about the 20 miler).

    Take it easy - you have lots of good training behind you.


  • Gladrags, you are right, I'm going to shut up.  I just needed some reassurance, that's all.  Today I am completely pain free and I haven't ran for 7 days.  In fact, I ended up having a tummy bug over the weekend, so it must have been my destiny to miss my last 20 miler.   I am going to take it easy and repeat your last sentence over and over again....thanks for your support x

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