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Couch to 5K
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W2R1 Calves holding me back!

Ok just completed W2R1in the local park. Completed my warm-upend started to run, felt great, not breathless, slow and steady then on the second run the calf pain set in again! Calves felt really tight so stopped briefly to stretch but they gradually got worse with each run. I managed to finish through gritted teeth but besides lots of stretching I'm not sure what else to do? I'm thinking of taking an Ibuprofen before my run. I know it's early days but please tell me it gets better with time!

4 Replies

Definitely lots of stretching especially afterwards and make sure you’re taking your rest days in between runs. Try slowing down a bit and see if that helps reduce the pain in your legs.

Also think about where you’re running, for example is it all flat or are there uphill parts? Is it all on pavements or is some on grass etc? These changes could work muscles differently and feel different.

Also are your shoes proper running shoes or normal trainers? Might be worth having your gait analysed in case you need shoes with a bit more support in them. I used to get dreadful shin splints when doing high impact classes yet I can run for 3-5 minutes with no pain. I put that down to my shoes - I was wearing normal trainers before but now have running shoes.

If you’re in pain, defo ease off a bit. The last thing you want to do is keep pushing if it’s painful and end up injuring yourself. X


Sarah has given a lot of good advice. The only thing I'd add is: Don't mask your pain symptoms with Ibuprofen. Pain is a natural defense mechanism, and you need it. Particularly when you start to do something new, like running. So listen to your body, slow down, take an extra day's rest, and conquer the pain by gently and slowly growing stronger :)

And yes. It does get easier.

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I'm currently on w3r3 so no expert but I suffered horrendous pains in wk1 and wk2 and I have rheumatoid arthritis. On my rest days I do the nah strength and flex plan which I believe is working as although I'm still getting the calf pain it is slowly getting better with each run. May be worth you giving that a go. Good luck to you hope things improve


Should be nhs not nah ....


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