Hi, I'm a 32year old athlete. Ive been running long distance for the past 11years. Somehow for the past 3 weeks i've been suffering from VERY stiff calves to the extent that today I couldnt complete a 10km run. Even after a light session, my calves are very stiff unlike previously. It is to be said that for the past 6 weeks or so I have increased my weekly kilometres from 75 to 100kms weekly. Could you please give me an explanation, why that I'm suffering from so much stiffness?
There are a few reasons why muscles get stiff. The most common in athletes in lactic acid build up due to oxygen starvation. In my case, I have spasticity (caused by brain lesions) where the muscle on the rear of the lower leg (the gastrocnemius) stays in tension against the muscle on the front of the lower leg (tibialis anterior.) Fibromyalgia is another cause for muscle stiffness. There are several possible neurologic causes, including spinal injuries, Adrenoleukodystrophy, etc.
I'd start with a visit to my primary care provider. They can do some basic blood work and an exam. Once they have the results they are in the best place to decide if this is something that can treat or if they should refer you to a Rhemitologist or a Neurologist.
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