Monday, April 7, 2014

RunnerDude's Weekly Exercise: Three-Position Calf Raises

Runners are notorious for having issues with their calves. Weak or tight calves can cause a host of other problems related to the Achilles tendon, plantar fascia, and even the shins. Strengthening the calves will help alleviate many of these problems. Pre- and post-run stretching and rolling of the calves will also help.

To to the exercise, hold dumbbells by your sides, stand on a step so that just the ball of each foot is on the step. (You can also do this standing on the floor.)  Both feet should be in a neutral position (facing forward). Slowly lift up on your toes as high as you can, and then slowly lower your feet back to the level starting position.
That's one rep. Do 10-12 reps. Repeat with the feet facing inward for 10-12 reps. This works the outer calf.  Next, repeat with feet facing outward for 10-12 reps. This works the inner calf.
Note: To get a good stretch before each lift, let your heels dip slightly below the horizon of the step before lifting up on your toes.

For more exercises for runners check out RunnerDude's new book Full-Body Fitness for Runners.

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