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:( I'm wondering if anybody can offer advice on the extreme calf pains I am receiving when I run. Here's my back ground.

I'm 36 (not sure if age should matter), and have been power walking for several years on my lunch hour. I walk about 4-5 KM in about 40 minutes for the most part of the year, except the worst bits of winter ( I live in Canada). For the most part, I don't have any problems except a little stiffness in the knees and hips when I start back up in the spring.

I really wanted to try running because I wanted to raise the bar a little and see if I could get better results then walking. I play ball hockey in the winter which consists of a lot of short sprints, back and forth in an arena and don t run into any problems.

I went out and bought a pair of Saucony's which fit me perfect and ran for the first time a few weeks ago. For about the first 10 minutes everything is great. My heart beat is pounding nicely, the sweat begins to pour and I really get invigorated. Then bam! I get this pain in the back of my calf like somebody has slashed my calf and ankles with a knife. I have to stop immediately and hobble for a bit before being able to walk it off. After a few minutes of walking I feel ok, but if I try and start running again it starts back up.

I thought at first it was something I had to get over by continuing to run, so I would let it heal for a couple of days and then try it again. Several weeks later and several runs later, the same thing. I can walk for miles and feel no pain but as soon as I start to run it happens.

I stretch before, I stretch after. I run on nice crushed gravel paths and concrete but get the same results (happens quicker on concrete). I would really like to continue running but I get the feeling my body is trying to tell me something.

Any advice????

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I would first look to see if it's the shoes you have. Sometimes it takes the "right" fit with the "right" shoe for you. The shoes you bought may have felt great when trying them on, but are not the best ones for you to run in.

The next advice...stretch. You said that you were doing that already, so that's the only thing I could think of.

I'm sure others here will have good advice for you.

Good Luck. :D
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That's all I could think of too, was stretching. This doesn't bother you while walking?

Maybe hit a running store, where they can videotape you and analyze your gait?
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Thanks all for the advice. I thought the shoes fit perfectly but I didn't buy them at a store specialized in running. Maybe I'll try that.

I was wondering about my stride as well. I used to run all the time when I was younger (ofcourse that was 15 years ago ) and never had problems but age is not a wonderful thing.
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I could be way off here, but is the pain in your lower calf and ankle? Maybe achilles tendonitis? I bought the perfect pair of shoes a few years ago myself, the Asics 2080's, felt great, and never completed one run in them they aggravated my achilles so much. (and I bought them from a running store) Sometimes you never know until you run in them. What's great for others, isn't for us.

Hope you find an answer soon.
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Katzoo, yes the calf and back of ankles is where I get the pain. It literally feels like my calf has seized up and no longer allows me to continue running.

So, did changing your shoes resolve the problem?
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My guess is that you just overdid it a little bit. I've experienced the same problems in the past and they were almost always due to overwork - my calves are the first muscle group to protest when I push too hard. Take it easy, stretch and whatever you do, don't try to run thru the pain. You'll only end up making things worse by trying to run thru it.
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The Beer Store? hey you must be a fellow Canadian.

Don't run through the pain? Uh oh, too late. I tried to be brave (wiping the tears from my eyes) and continue running but I think I probably made it worse, as you said.

Actually I went out today after taking a 3 day rest (only power walked on Sunday) and ran for about 5 minutes and then walked 5 minutes, so on and so on. I did this for about 15 minutes before the pain started back up which forced me to stick to walking. The result? They don't hurt, so I'm happy. I think the best advice (given by someone, though i can't remember) was to take it easy. I think I'll continue this walk/run routine for a couple of weeks and see if can build up the calf strength. I think tomorrow I'll just stick to power walking and then maybe do both the day after.

thanks for posting a reply.
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Not a fellow Canadian but I spend a minimum of a week in Ontario every year fishing. I love the beer store..... so many choices, so little time....
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