Worn out calves from running

  • Creator
  • #67597

    I’ve have run semi-regularly for a few years (2-3 x per week) but recently have been picking up my running volume (4-5 days / week and more distance) and so far my calves are getting very sore and tired (both gastronemeous and soleus). They are my limiting factor on nearly every run. I’ve increased calf mobility work with roller and lacrosse ball and it helps a small amount but not significantly. I’ve spent a decent bit of time working calf strength and mobility into my workouts over the past year. Looking for advice on may be driving this and how to best work through it.

    Could running form / gait be a primary culprit or more likely just calf strength? Interested in any advice from the forum as so many here are more knowledgeable than me. Thanks!

  • Participant
    mark.davin on #67615

    Hi there – As always best to speak to a sports therapist and/or physiotherapist. I can only speak as to my experience around a similar issue. I have found that soleus and glute strengthening has been key to reducing/not experiencing calf injuries. I have also pretty much removed any form of calf stretching which has (I believe) helped hugely in my case.

    For soleus in particular, include weighted (kettle/dumb bell) bent leg calf raises. The bent leg is key here. Also you can do weighted seated calf raises (weight plates positioned on knee, feet can be partially raised into flexion by smaller weight plates to increase ROM). Bent leg and additional weight will increase your resilience within the soleus if this has proven to be a contributor to the issue. Introducing normal skipping rope workouts can also assist with general calf conditioning and resilience here.

    trevorjwilson on #67621

    Thanks Mark! Really appreciate hearing what helped and very interesting that you removed stretching and that appeared to help. I do think I could do more exercises focused on the soleus. Thanks agin.

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