Couch to 5K
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Am I the only one whose calfs are getting REALLY large??

I'm now on week 4 of C25K and I really enjoy running now, which is totally surprising since I've passed the previous 30 years avoiding any form of exercises except belly dance and fitness at the gym club, but it was years ago. I'm recovering from a chimio and a surgery and my legs were okay looking back then, even if I was and am still overweight.

Since I've started running, I've been delighted by all the positive aspects of it (more energy, less stress etc...) but I notice that my calfs are now much larger - I feel my muscles are thighter but I thought that sport would actually improve the look of my body and not making it looking worse! I know it sounds really superficial, but I really need to be in peace with my body after all the past difficulties...

I'm not planning on giving up running (I've caught the bug I would say) but I wonder if I do it the wrong way (is it a matter of type of shoes, of grounds...)? Do my weight (1,55m/61in for 74kg/48Ib) may have an influence on it - like a heavy charge that would be put on my legs and force my muscles reacting by going larger? Will it eventually go back to normal once my body will get used to running? If not, are there any specific exercises that would help me to stretch my legs to be longer/thinner instead of larger?

Thank you very much and sorry about my English - I hope it's not too confusing!

4 Replies

The issue is that running will build up your calf muscles. I've noticed this when wearing my winter boots, and have had a struggle to zip them up. Having said that, I like the tone and definition, better than having flabby calves which I suffered from before running.


I'm sure your legs are just getting more shapely! Maybe concentrate on other areas: your thighs, your stomach... You must be looking toned!

And I agree with Saruma, defined is better than flabby ;)

But you're right, you haven't been running for that long yet, it probably will balance out in time! Don't give up!

And if you're worried, look at the champion runners: they all have great bodies.


Good luck and Congratulations for doing this! I wonder whether stretching exercises before and after would help..I do it before and after my run for 2-3 minutes.


I'm the same, I've lost a stone and 30cm in the last 7 weeks, however my calf's have gotten 1/2 cm larger. It's the only part of my body which has gotten bigger.


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