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Discussion Starter #1
Hi.

I'm a 35 year old chap, and have been playing squash for years, but need to improve my fitness to help my squash, now I'm getting on a bit.

I've been running with my wife, and I've got as far as doing 7km in 41 minutes, which I'm fairly pleased with for now.

My question is this. The fitness I've got from squash doesn't seem to be helping my running much, I guess I must use different muscles etc. I'm not being limited by my cardio fitness, but it's all my legs!! I really hurt in my calves and the back of my thighs, and that's what stopping me going faster. What can I do to help with the legs, just run more, or something else?
 

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I'll be short and sweet and give a basic answer... you'll need to run more.

Most people start running as a means of getting fit and find (as I did myself) that the limiting factor is their cardiovascular system. As fitness improves the limiting factor seems to shift over to the muscles, and whilst strength training for the legs will help, nothing can better replicate the repetitive use of running muscles carrying out a running action better than running can! Perservere with the running - it sounds like you're doing great, and you'll undoubtedly improve with time :)
 

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You're doing well to do date and sore legs are to be expected even if you are squash fit.

You just need to run sensibly..not do too much too soon. Run within yourself in terms of speed and distance and gradually build up running stength.

Make sure you wear a proper pair of running shoes to suit your gait.
 

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I had a period of about 3.5 weeks where, despite lots of rest days, my legs hurt permanently. They were just about getting over the ache from the last run as I did the next one.

It stopped eventually, partly because my legs got stronger, partly because I'd been running too fast and realised it and slowed down a little.

Make sure you take rest days to have some chance to recover, don't go too fast (the best tip I was given was that you should be able to talk while you're running - if you can't, slow down), and keep at it, and your legs will gradually get stronger and stop hurting.
 

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When I started I had the same problems - had the lungs and fitness but not the legs. As RS mentioned, this is a good sign as most people have the opposite problem - so your fitness from squash definitely does help you !

Also, I disagree with most people here. I think that generalised muscle soreness is a good sign of getting better and I like it. I am secretly proud when I get muscle soreness now as it's only when I really push myself that I get it :lol:.

To get better at running you need to be able to cope with minor problems - they should not always be a reason to take it easy or rest. Most people are capable of more than they think!
 

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Muscle soreness is one of those things you'll get used to. I ache like hell when I get up in the morning!
Mind you, if I went out and played squash I wouldn't be able to walk!
 

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Also, I disagree with most people here. I think that generalised muscle soreness is a good sign of getting better and I like it. I am secretly proud when I get muscle soreness now as it's only when I really push myself that I get it :lol:.
I think age has a part to play here...being 21 has its advantages!;)
 

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I have to admit to running through sore calves the last few days. I know it is because I am overdoing it so I take it easy for a day then up it again.

I am hoping my leg fitness will catch up with my desire at some point.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
thanks all. Just pushed much harder than before and did five k in 26 mins. Very pleased, but mostly I was gasping for breath at the end, whilst my legs still hurt, so I guess everything is starting to even out. The muscle pain is still bad, but I really got my heart going too. Might concentrate on shorter (5k) runs as higher pace to get the legs toughened up...
 

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I started running after spending 2 years losing weight and developing good cardio fitness on a bike. I found running difficult at first on the legs. I could run short distances really fast, but always had sore legs. The only thing that helped me improve was running further and more frequently. Even then, it was about 3 months of consistent running before I no longer felt it in my legs.
 

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thanks all. Just pushed much harder than before and did five k in 26 mins. Very pleased, but mostly I was gasping for breath at the end, whilst my legs still hurt, so I guess everything is starting to even out. The muscle pain is still bad, but I really got my heart going too. Might concentrate on shorter (5k) runs as higher pace to get the legs toughened up...

Personally I would do the exact opposite. The pain means you are pushing to the limit which is good but if you push further you may damage something. By slowing up and doing a slow distance you can give the muscles recovery time without stopping the exercise.

Speed can come later once your muscles have developed.

NB this is not a proffesional opinion, just what has worked for me.
 

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I've been -ahem- 'running' for about 10 weeks now and seem to be ok-ish on the cardio side, except for the uphill bits, but I do seem to be in an almost constant state of achey legs. I just put it down to going with the territory of becoming a runner, and the fact my body is still in shock after 40 odd years of neglect.

I'm kinda hoping that one day I won't be walking like John Wayne the day after a run, but as it isn't real specific 'pain' caused by an injury, I tend to look at it rather like Mr Revenged as a private 'badge of honour' that I'm doing something new and good.
 
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