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I'm a high school cross country runner, and after several races and runs I've noticed that my right calf is almost always more tired after a run, and then more sore the next day. My right leg is not any weaker than my left and others on my team do not have this same problem, so I am led to believe it is correlated to my form. What am I doing wrong to cause this imbalance, and how can it be fixed?

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  • Has your coach analyzed you gait? Do you have any feet problems? – brentwpeterson Aug 22 '14 at 13:59
  • @brentwpeterson My couch thinks I have good form overall, although that tends to go downhill when racing (as most peoples' does) and my feet feel fine – Liam McInroy Aug 22 '14 at 14:06
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I would tell your coach where you are sore then have them give you specifically watch your form during your training and during your races. It could be that your form is great when you are strong but as you tire it degrades and you are overcompensating on one leg. This will cause your other leg to work less. This would explain the imbalance.

I would also add that many high school runner start in August and sometimes will over train. If you haven't run all summer then I would tell your coach so they know that you need to build some base to get ready for you season this fall.

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Run trails. Become comfortable at agility training. I am guessing that part of the problem is nerve/reflex from a flat pavement mixed with constricted hips from sitting/driving.

Mountain trail running has proved to relieve my leg imbalances and rejuvenate my musculoskelatal system. If trails are difficult to get to, I recommend agility training to compliment the long slow distance of forward momentum. Merely playing soccer might suffice. Football agility (i.e. rope ladder) might help to better understand the problem. Basketball should add a gentle explosive agility. Without mountain trails the imbalance may not entirely go away, but the complete muscle development would do wonders toward insuring a longer, competitive running life. Also consider swimming and cycling to compliment and provide an active rest.

Also a physical therapist, chiropractor, orthopedist, massage therapist might diagnose a "pinched nerve" (probably from the chair) and they might be able to make the feeling go away. However, I doubt the underlying cause will be conquered. Still these professionals will provide valuable insight.

You could try to improve your form and there are several books I would recommend, but fundamentally, running in a straight line on a flat road everyday- is for expensive robots.

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