How much firness will I lose??

Hello Guys,

I'm sorry to ask what I know has been asked before but here's the deal.

I'm doing the Windsor 1/2 next week. However, I have a calf injury that although it doesn't stop me running, does hurt and slow me down a bit. What I want to do is some more serious and structured training but I'm finding that difficult with the restriction of the calf.

So I'm doing Windsor, probably with Mrs RB and possibly with the aid of some Ibuprofen (yes, I know it's not the best of ideas but I really want to do this one).

Anyway, after that, I plan to take at least a week and probably two off running to allow the injury to repair and go away. In the meantime, I plan, where possible to take my mountain bike out and ride (quite hard) for about 1 hr at a time.

So how much fitness would I lose? How long will it take to get back again and what else should I think of doing?

I took the bike out at the weekend BTW and it doesn't strain the calf so should be OK.

Any advice gratefully received.



  • Hello Ratbag,
    I had a three week layoff end July/first two weeks of August due to back injury followed by holiday. It took at least a week of my holiday for my back to get etter, & then I just swam (not very hard) with the family & took it easy until I got back home.
    I managed a 13 mile run this Sunday so I'm back to distances now but my speed sessions are still not quite back to where they were at the beginning of July - but it's not far off.
    If you can manage to do something other than flounder around in a pool with the kids & gentle walks then you should get back much quicker I reckon.
    See you at Windsor!
  • RB do you know what has caused this injury? If you come back too hard/fast and/or you get to the stage where you are repeating the cause of this injury then it will happen again.

    I would have thought in general you should look for two to three times longer to come back than you are off for - but them I'm trying to train conservatively this time around.
  • Can't really answer I'm afraid. But I took 3 months off after Windsor last year, and then took 5 minutes off my time when I ran Reading.
  • I had to pull out of this year's FLM with a calf strain. Didn't run for 3 weeks, but did some swimming & cycling. I reckon it took about 5 minutes off my 10K time and took about 6 weeks to get back to where I was before the injury.
  • RB

    I read somewhere - maybe Hal Higdon - that picking up a minor niggle/injury is the best thing that can happen to you three weeks before a marathon as it forces you to taper. You don't lose anything, in fact you benefit. Maybe the same applies with two weeks before a 1/2?

  • My sympathies RB, I think we all know what you are going through.

    For me the key thing would be to avoid putting on the odd pound or two; injury causes depression, causes comfort eating...
    The effects of this are as much psychological as physical. If you can keep your conditioning up (the biking is a good idea) then I wouldn't think the missed training with have a noticable effect (but the injury might).

    Best of luck.
  • I once read somewhere that for every 2 weeks of no training you lose 6 weeks of training (if that makes sense). I think they were referring to 'general' fitness. I find it a bit hard to believe though. I'm sure the fitter you are the slower you lose fitness during a lay-off period.
  • I know how you feel. I've been layed off for about 6 weeks now and have had to pull out of the GNR.

    It is so frustrating seeing my running partners going out from work, I feel really left out!!!

    But I'm not going to let it get me down. I'm cycling, swimming or doing a class (tried ballistics today!!!) everyday and just hoping that when I get back into it I'll not be holding my pals up too much!
  • Thanks all.

    I still intend to try some running just to get me through to Windsor and then I'll take off as long as necessary.

    I'm going to see how it is tomorrow and if still tweaking will try a longish bike ride instead.

    All the best,

  • RB

    I read the title of the thread and though that you had missed an "m", then realised that you had typed an "r" instead of a "t".


    Good luck for Windsor.
  • IanIan ✭✭✭
    I had 2 weeks off as a result of an ankle sprain during which I cycled and went to the gym. I found I lost very little of general fitness but I definitely lost some speed from the top end. It came back pretty quickly though - after about 3 weeks.
  • Nessie,

    I hadn't noticed it until you pointed it out!!

    As you say, phew!!!


    I guess right now speed at the top end isn't too much of an issue but it might be if I can get injury free and do some serious training!!
  • Do Windsor, recover, cross train and then come back in time for the northern forum meet: Helsby 1/2.

    Hope you're OK at the weekend.
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