Saturday, May 2, 2009

Forbidden Drive and Calf Tightness (help requested)

Saturday 5.2.09
AM: 11 1/2 in 84:13.
Ran on Forbidden Drive in PA. One of the best places in the northeast to go for a jog. Forbidden Drive is a wide dirtroad with 1/2 mile markers that is closed to traffic. The road hugs Wissahickon Creek and it's not unusual to see loads of people, dogs, and horses filling up the path, especially when the weather gets nice. The run started off nice and easy, but my left calf was achy from the first step. The dull throb lasted for the first five miles then slowly exacerbated. The second five miles (Forbidden Drive is 5 1/3 miles long and I run in out-and-back style) I gradually picked up the pace and the pain in the calf got a little worse. After 7 or 8 miles I worked my pace down to 6:24 (body felt good) and that's when the calf really tightened. By 11 miles, I had to slow down. By 11 1/2 I had to stop and walk. I tried massaging and stretching, but it just locked up.

As I write this now, hours later, it feels like I have a rock halfway up my calf. I've been running relatively easy, so to have this type of problem is more than perturbing. If anybody out there can give me some advice on how to loosen up once-and-for-all a perennially sore calf, I'd be eternally grateful. As I look back on it, a couple of factors might have lead to this tightness: 1, Tuesday night I woke up with a muscle spasm in my left calf (this happens to me fairly regularly); 2, the pickups I did on Wednesday might have been a bit too much (seems hard to believe as it was only 15 minutes of quasi-hard running). I've been battling left calf soreness intermittently for over two years now. Again, if anyone has solutions, please pass them along. I stretch pre and post run and ice and self-massage (w/ stick or foam roller). Despite all this, the calf tightness still persists. Help.

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