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October 1, 2009

For the past few months I've been upping my running miles while training for a 10K—and my legs have paid the price. The days after my long runs, I started getting bad calf cramps. They would be so sore and tight in the morning that I'd have trouble getting out of bed. How was I supposed to run when I could barely walk?

Fortunately, my trainer, Equinox's Lauren Kern, showed me a technique to help: Sit on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you and place a tennis ball under one of your calves. Push down with your hands and lift your butt off the floor so that your weight is supported by your hands and the ball under your leg. Then roll the tennis ball around under your calf, making sure it hits all the sore spots. I tried it and it felt like a deep-muscle massage right where I hurt the most.

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