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Help needed:

I have always been a reasonable runner and could happily plod the miles out even after periods of down time.

Recent changes in work mean that I now jog home (about 4 miles) circa 3 times a week. No great shakes I hear you cry. Recently though, my outer calves have begun aching about 2 miles in and by the time I get home they are fit to burst! I stretch but it isn't helping. The only thing that has changed is I now run with a small, if relatively full, rucksack! Could this be affecting my stride pattern so much that its causing this issue?


  • PC67PC67 Posts: 101
    After years of running shortish distances (3 or 4 miles) a few times a week I suddenly started developing calf trouble & at times it got quite bad. It'd be OK up until 3 or 4 miles but anything longer and my right calf really started hurting. Sometimes my hip started hurting too, and quite badly.

    I had only ever bought my trainers off the shelf before but I got my running style checked out and was told to use medium support shoes which stopped ny feet overpronating (turning outwards as I planted my feet). I also ubought rubber heel inserts as my achilles would hurt a bit too.

    This worked up to a point, but ultimately the problem would return, to varying degrees. I'd have to rest 3 to 4 days between even shortish runs to give my calves a chance to heal.

    However, completely unrelated to my running, I went to see a chiropractor about some lower back pain, nothing major. I was told that due to a minor pelvic problem one leg was an inch longer than the other. He cracked everything back into place and my calf problems are generally fine now. The sharp pain in my right hip was almost instantly cured by the chiro visit.

    Chiropractors are generally expensive so I wouldn't see one regularly. Some are quite sharp practitioners too. A friend works as a chiro as a living and he tells me to avoid those who say you need to keep coming back time after time. Many ailments can be put right in one or two sessions. There's one nationality in particular that I would always avoid. Non-european.

    I visit my chiro in London maybe 3 times a year just to give everything a "service".

    So a combination of getting my running style checked, being told to use a certain type of shoe and the occasional chiro visit has me running pain & injury free now.

    I ran 10k in 44mns flat last Sunday in the monthly Mornington Chasers winter series in Regents Park, 3 mins faster than my PB from October and 10 mins faster than my Royal Windsor Olympic Distance time from June, and I never felt better. It actually struck me near the end how, please God, my calf problems appear to be behind me (no pun intended).

    Some say it pays to see an orthopodist(?) to have shoes fitted but I just visited a specialist running shop (Runners Need in this instance) and was given a standard medium support trainer off the shelf.

    Hope this is useful info.
  • MikeyBMikeyB Posts: 135
    It's possible that a rucsack could affect you. Have you tried a run recently without it? Did you get the same pain?

    The extra weight means you are landing more heavily and may start overreaching trying to keep the same stride length and speed. Also make sure you have the correct trainers as it may make existing running problems worse.

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