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Jogging & Running/Calf strain - follow up question


Hi Nick,

You recently provided me with your opinion on a rehab running schedule for returning to running after two weeks off due to a mild calf strain.

Well, before I got your response, I went to the sports injury doc and he suggested that I do a 5 mile run on my first time back from the strain (I was up to 11.5 miles before the strain).  

So, my first run back, last Saturday, I did 5 miles and felt fine afterward.  The next morning my legs were sore  (not just the calf) -- because it had been two weeks since I had worked out at all because of the strain.  It was just muscle soreness not injury.  I spinned on the spin bike the day after the run and completed three runs, averaging 3 miles each Monday through Wednesday of this week. Think I read your message saying I should start out at one mile and increase up, by the time I had already begun the 3 mile runs.  

Well anyway, I'm taking today and tomorrow off before I attempt to do a longer run on Saturday.  My question is, since I'm already off on the schedule you suggested and the most mileage I've done since returning to running is 5 miles, do you think it would be okay to try and increase to 6 miles this weekend?  I'm guessing I probably started out with too much too soon, but I don't want to go backward at this point from where I started after my return.

What do you think?  I didn't have any pain during any of my runs.  I did notice that the muscle soreness in the calf took a little longer to wear off than the soreness in the rest of my legs tho.  I've been rolling on both the Grid and a lacross ball every day, stretching and doing calf raises as well.

I'm glad you didn't have too much pain with running that far Cecilia! I always recommend a slower rather than faster return if I'm not there to monitor the athlete. I always say, "listen to your body." It will tell you what's best. Pain isn't always a good indicator of what is going on, but in a muscle strain case it is. Try 6 miles, but if you're feeling pain at 4 then stop. If they are sore for a couple days after then do light, shorter runs or other type of training.

Let me know if I can help more! Good luck!  

Jogging & Running

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Nick Rainey


I can answer questions about pain and training program. If there is a question about running that I don't know then I'll do some research and make sure I provide you with an answer.


I'm a Doctor of Physical Therapy. I'm a track and cross country coach. I train clients throughout the year. I've helped prepare athletes for their NFL Pro Days. I've written articles on running. Finally, those that I work with have less pain and run faster.

American Physical Therapy Association- Sports Section

The 6 Week Workout Program- I'm the author of this book Research Made Simple for Physical Therapists- I'm the author of this Kindle book

Board Certified Clinical Specialist in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy Doctor of Physical Therapy BS in Exercise Science NSCA- CSCS and CPT USA Weightlifting Level I NPI- Certified Posture Specialist Total Motion Release Level II Certified Dry Needling

Awards and Honors
National Posture Institute's International Perfect Posture of the Year Award 2011 Clinical Excellence Award- Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions Aegis Therapies Scholarship recipient

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