Tight Calfs

I've been having problems with tight calfs. I've been getting into running again for the past 3 months and this has been a problem for the past month or so. Sometimes on a longer run (5 miles) the tightness goes after 2 miles or so but it returns at the end of the run. I stretch both before and after every run and have recently bought new trainers after having my feet scanned at the Sweatshop in Teddington so I am wearing the correct shoes for my foot type.

I've read previous posts on this subject and have tried the stretching and massage already. Does anyone have any new suggestions that we can try? It also hurts now when I walk, let alone run.

Thanks for any suggestions.


  • mmmmm, I wonder how you got that nickname

    Yep, it could be overtraining. What do I do though now, do I not run until they stop hurting or do I just take it easy and do shorter distances?

    Thanks for your help.

    Susi Q
  • I think if you have been running for only three months your body is building the muscles you need keep running go longer,
  • sorry, so your saying I should run through the pain????
  • Well its up to you but i would, get some tiger balm
  • okay, thanks. I think its more than just tight because it hurts now even when I'm walking, let alone running, and going up and down stairs is a real no no.
  • I've found regular massage helps a lot to iron out the knots and tightness in the legs, especially in the calf muscles.

    Perhaps you need to run at an easier pace - lactic acid may be building up and causing the tightness in your calfs because you're pushing the pace before you are ready.
  • What sort of shoes do you wear normally, heels???
  • yes I do, but only 2" block heels. I may have added on too much distance too soon but I certainly haven't been running too fast, if only :-) I'm a 12 minute miler so speed is not of the essence to me.

  • If you have always worn heels it does shorten the calf muscles spend as much time in bare feet as possible
  • I do try to vary heel size and only wear heels during the day and do wander around the house in bare feet in the evenings and wear trainers at the weekend. They are actually feeling a bit easier today after taking a couple of nurofen yesterday evening and this morning.
  • Honestly when i started running after about 2 weeks I suffered form bad lower back pain and I was advised to rest, well I didnt as i kwew I would never start again and I ran through it and it resolved itself I think as I had been a swimmer previously my body was just adapting 2 the new exercise.
  • Yes, I think as long as you take it easy and keep moving alot of these things can work themselves out.
  • I had persistent calf pain which started about 6 weeks after a started running and then just got worse and worse. I finally admitted that I had a problem when I couldn't remember the last time I'd been able to go down stairs without using the bannister. I went to a physio and she diagnosed tendonitis (not of the achilles but of one of the tendons on the lower outside of the calf). We eventually fixed it by massage, ultrasound, rest, stretches, strengthening exercises and arch supports.

    My advice, for what it's worth, is do no running or other loadbearing exercise for a whole week (swimming is OK) and get a good running shop to check that you've got the right shoe. If all else fails see a physio.

    I'm now running harder and longer than I was before but I have no hint of the problem anymore (touch wood).

  • Thanks for that Millipede but I only got these shoes 2 weeks ago from Sweatshop who scanned my feet and recommended the trainers I've now got. BTW, the pain was before the new shoes and was part of the reason I went and got some new ones, because I'd never had my running style looked at properly before and I thought my old trainers could have been the problem.

    I've actually been out for a 4 mile run this evening and they stopped hurt after 3 miles or so :-) Started again once I stopped though.

    Thanks for the ideas though.
  • http://www.califmall.com/footherapy.html

    This is the best exercise I've ever ever found for tight calves / achilles tendons / foot pain whatever. It literally got me up off my knees immediatley after doing it (I'd been crawling round the house with Achilles problems) but works brilliantly for lots of lower leg problems
  • Thanks SS, I'll have a look at that.
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