I routinely advise runners in my practice to perform 100 calf raises a day to help strengthen their calf muscles which can improve injuries such as plantar fasciitis and achilles tendonitis. Even non-runners who are suffering from plantar fasciitis can benefit from this. 100 in a row may be difficult so I usually recommend sets throughout the day adding up to one-hundred. Performing five days a week is usually sufficient.
Runner’s world recently featured calf raises for their weekly workout. They only advised 2-3 sets of 8-10 reps which I think is not enough. The calf muscles are “fatigue” muscles, meaning they need to be worked to the point of fatigue to see endurance benefits. Remember, you’re using these muscles all day long by standing and walking. Working your way up to 100 hundred a day will no doubt improve your endurance for the long run!
Weekly Workout – Week 2
Performed after strides, heel raises help strengthen your calves for increased endurance on long runs.
July 15, 2014
Week 2 of the Weekly Workout features heel raises, which help strengthen your calves to increase endurance for long training runs. Perform the heel raises on an incline with your heels lowered below the balls of your feet with something to stabilize yourself within arms reach. Perform 2-3 sets of 8-10 reps using both feet. Once the sets become easy to perform, switch to single leg heel raises, alternating feet between reps.
Each week over the next 12 weeks Runner’s World will release a new video that gives you a quick exercise, stretch, or drill to add to the end of your run to help train you for a fall full of PR’s. The video will add a new move to your routine and by the end of September you will have a full 12-step sequence to perform at the end of your run.
Dr. Campitelli is a podiatrist in Akron, OH specializing in foot and ankle surgery with an interest and enthusiasm for running as well as helping runners with injuries. For the past several years he has been treating running injuries in patients by fixing their form and transitioning them to minimalist shoes. Having treated runners with all types of injuries through conservative measures with orthotics and shoe gear changes to reconstructive foot and ankle surgery, Dr. Campitelli has brought what works best and is most current to his practice as well as the Akron and Cleveland running communities.