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Lump
April 30th, 2011, 11:25 AM
So I strain my calf to the point where I felt a small "pop" towards the end of a 6-mile run (I usually only do about 3-3.5, but was in FLAT Florida) last month. I don't run for a full month until last week after I finished up with Y Nats. Ran last Saturday and felt good other than really sore in the quads the next couple days because I just needed to get me legs under me again. So again, I go to run on Tuesday and start to get that stiffness again at the bottom of my calf/top of achilles. So I end up walking the rest of the way.

Now its Saturday, 4 days later and my calf/achilles has been tight, stiff and sore all week....to the point I'm almost limping again. So what is the best treatment/rehab for these things? Ice? Heat? Just rest? Roller stick? I've never really anything like this before, even when I was a lazy stretcher back in the day. Its REALLY annoying, but it doesn't bother me during swimming (other than starts, but I don't do those in practice) since kicking has it flexed in the opposite direction. Its stairs, running, calf raises....anything that puts weight to push off my right leg.

Thanks for any advice.....I'm just really worried about possibly tearing the calf or achilles all the way through!

aquajock
April 30th, 2011, 12:55 PM
You have likely torn some tissue there and it needs time to heal. Ice, anti-inflammatories (if they are safe for you to take), elevating the area and rest is the best formula. I have found that large tissue areas heal in a few days if I ice four times a day and take it easy (I've had quick recovery of hamstring, gastrocnemius (calf) and adductor tears). Shoulder injuries take much longer... I hope this helps.

RadSwim
April 30th, 2011, 01:05 PM
You may have a torn or partially torn Achilles tendon. If I had your symptoms, I would see a Sports Medicine specialist.
Good luck,
RadSwim

Thrashing Slug
April 30th, 2011, 06:08 PM
I have the exact same problem, minus the pop. Mine happened last weekend after a 14 mile run with lots of hills. It was my longest run to date, the culmination of a months-long and heretofore injury-free training period for a half marathon. :( There were a few minutes around mile 5 when I felt really good and ran extra hard on an uphill portion of the run. I think that's probably what did it, combined with the high mileage. I didn't notice any problems on the day of the run, but the following day my calf and achilles were so sore and tight that I couldn't walk without a limp.

After 2 days of rest, ice, and some hardcore work on my calf with foam rollers and The Stick, it felt good enough to walk on and use the elliptical machine. By Thursday it felt back to 100% so I mixed in two 5-minute treadmill intervalls between elliptical sets. That resulted in more soreness, although not as bad as the first time. So I haven't done any more running since then, and I don't plan on trying until a week from now. This morning I learned that cycling is yet another activity that I can't do. I'm down to swimming, weights, and the !#!!!@# elliptical machine, which I hate.

I'm not sure how serious your injury is, but in my case it felt like the muscles and fascia were so tight that it was preventing the achilles from going through its normal range of motion. When I worked on my calf with the rollers (a very painful process, I might add) I felt a major, noticeable increase in ankle mobility and decreased achilles soreness. Ice helps too.

Research indicates that this is the type of injury that requires proactive physical therapy to prevent it from becoming chronic. I found quite a few articles online that recommended doing eccentric stretching exercises to rehab the tendon, once the acute pain is gone. For example, standing on a step and lowering your heels, then raising them using your calf muscles. That's what I plan on doing for the next couple of weeks.

I was reading about this injury today and I learned that we can put forces up to 12 times our body weight on the achilles tendon while running. It's a wonder that we can run at all.

My half marathon is May 15th, but I'm not sure if I'll be ready to run again by then. I may have to scratch the race, but I guess that's better than tearing the largest and most important tendon in my body.

Be careful.

__steve__
May 1st, 2011, 12:00 AM
6 miles? I've been running for about one year consistantly, at least twice a week, and the furthest I've gone is 2.8 miles. If I did 6 miles just for a good aerobic workout I would be injured too. Although I'm just training to do a sub 10min 1.5 mi someday, distance shouldn't be increased so rapidly for anyone

hope it heals up for you

Lump
May 1st, 2011, 10:37 PM
You may have a torn or partially torn Achilles tendon. If I had your symptoms, I would see a Sports Medicine specialist.
Good luck,
RadSwim

I would, but I'm out of work currently with no medical insurance.:badday:

Lump
May 1st, 2011, 10:39 PM
6 miles? I've been running for about one year consistantly, at least twice a week, and the furthest I've gone is 2.8 miles. If I did 6 miles just for a good aerobic workout I would be injured too. Although I'm just training to do a sub 10min 1.5 mi someday, distance shouldn't be increased so rapidly for anyone

hope it heals up for you

I usually run 3-4 in my hilly neighborhood. So 5-6 in FLAT Florida (Destin) on a cool, foggy morning shouldn't be hard at all for me.

ElaineK
May 3rd, 2011, 01:08 AM
:bighug: Awww, sorry to hear that Lump! I hope you get better soon! Are you planning on going to the Athens meet? If so, I wish you a speedy recovery! :cheerleader: