After running in races for over 30 years I EXPERIENCED MY CALF CRAMPING IN THE MIDDLE of race. After having to walk it for over 200 yards, I resumed running and ran about a mile to complete the race. Two days later I still feel some discomfort while going up stairs which I do several times a day at work. Any suggestions ?
You've now got two problems. Soreness caused by the protracted cramp, and the propensity to cramp itself. You probably want to treat the lingering soreness as you would any sore muscle. But the underlying problem was the mid-race cramp. You don't want ot repeat that process. The predominant cause is dehydration. As we age, the thirst sensation weakens, but the need for hydration remains. That's a problem. You've got to force yourself to drink more when you run more and drink more when it's hot. If I were a TV doctor, I'd prescribe substantial pre-race hydration for you. Drink up!
What Jeff says is dead on and probably the right diagnosis for 90% of the cramps that occur while running. I think the race you ran this weekend was the Dick Bessel 2.3M race which makes dehydration an unlikely cause. Because of the length of the race, you were probably pushing the pace harder than usual. That does 2 things, it puts more stress on the muscles of the lower leg and may cause a change in running form that puts more pressure on the lower leg(mid-foot or ball of foot strike). Another consideration is your choice of race day shoes. A flatter soled racing flat puts much more stress on the calf muscles. I know my first few races and track workouts every year result in sore and sometimes crampy calves for these reasons.