Calf Pain. Can I Run?

by Andy
(San Francisco, CA)

I ran 5 miles on Sunday, and everything was ok but after that (like 2 hrs after) my right calf started to hurt. Is like someone had hit me on the side of my lower leg (toward the inside). I kind of stopped and waited a little while for stretching, but I stretched anyway.

The pain, which was mild, was there all monday through Wednesday while I walked, but I thought I could run, and I did 3 miles yesterday, the pain went away while I was running but it still bothered a little all the time I ran.

Today the pain is a little bit worse, not horrible, but worse than before (probably I shouldn't have run). When I woke up, I was actually limping, but it went away now.
But I don't have any swelling, it's not bruised, there was no clicking at any time, just hurt when I walk, especially when I go downstairs. It doesn't hurt when I sit, meaning not moving and I can flex my toes with no pain. The pain is not really bad and I think I could run, but I don't know if I should, since the pain is there ALL the time.

Should I go to the doctor, how much should I wait, can I run while I wait. Please don't tell me I can't run.

Answer by Dominique:

Hi Andy,

Thanks for your running injury question. It is always hard to diagnose someone via a few words. But this sounds most like the beginning signs of shin splints.

You can get shin splints on the inside or the front/outside of your lower leg.

Shin splints usually start as a bit of an annoying pain. During your workout the pain goes away, but after the workout the pain comes back a bit stronger.

You can get shin splints because of too much stress on your lower legs, usually put on by too much mileage. But shin splints can also be caused by worn shoes.

I can highly recommend to stop running now. If this develops into a chronic injury, you are not going to be a happy camper for a long time.

Icing your lower legs should be a first thing you do. The Shin Ice is a pretty good solution for icing your shins easily. Click here for more information.

Stretching your legs is also really important. Check out my page on running stretches for some good stretches to strengthen your lower legs and the muscles around your lower legs.

Further treatment of your shins is possible via the shin splint compression wrap from Pro-Tec. Click here for more information.

Don't think that this is the end of running, or the end of exercise. There are plenty of cross-training possibilities, e.g. swimming, running and the gym. It will take an extra ounce of motivation to keep going whilst injured, but consider it a character-building exercise and keep on going!

Andy, if you think that you do not have shin splints, then at least make sure you get this diagnosed by a doctor. Better safe than sorry.

Best of luck and hope you can remediate this issue quickly!

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Running Injury Helpline.

Like this page:

Share this page:

Like this site:

[?] Subscribe To This Site

follow us in feedly
Add to My Yahoo!


  • Beginner Running Tips

    Are you a beginning runner? Then this is your best starting point. Many tips and running programs on offer, dedicated to you.

  • Running for Weight Loss

    Aiming to lose a few pounds? Get into the Running for Weight Loss section for tips and advice.

  • Running Training

    The Running Training section of the site has got the most articles. It is constantly getting updated with new tips and information. A must-visit if you are serious about improving your running performance.

  • 5k Running Tips

    The 5k is a great distance to run and train for. The great thing is that you can do it quite often and see big improvements.

  • 10k Running Tips

    The 10k is a real challenge. You need to run fast for an uncomfortably long time! Check out this section if you are strong of mind and legs!

  • Marathon Running Tips

    The marathon is a massive challenge. Proper training is so important! Make sure to check out this section if you have got your mind set on the marathon!

What's New?

  1. Guide on How to Treat Black Toenail | Best Running Tips

    Discover effective and easy ways to treat black toenail. Understand causes, symptoms, prevention methods. Visit now to learn more.

    Read more

  2. Pain in Heel When Running - Common Causes, Treatment and Prevention Strategies

    Have you got some pain in your heel when running? Check out this page to learn about common causes, what to do about your heel pain and when to visit the doctor.

    Read more

  3. Common Running Injuries: Causes and Treatments

    running tips 07
    In this section of Best Running Tips I will tell you about the most common running injuries. Learn about them so you know how to prevent them !

    Read more

  4. Foot and Ankle Strengthening Exercises

    This short article provides a list of foot and ankle strengthening exercises that can improve your foot stability and prevent heel pain when running.

    Read more

  5. First Marathon for Older Runner

    I am 68 years old. I have been a runner for 33 years doing mostly 5 and 10K race with one half marathon. I usually run a 5K in 25-27 minutes and the

    Read more