I have had two charlie horses in the past two weeks. One swimming and one running. What is going on? Am I working too hard...or is it a nutrition thing?
Aside from the obvious stretching more (multiple times throughout the day), drinking enough, having enough potassium make sure you are getting enough Calcium and Magnesium in your diet. A vitamin supplement geared specifically at Calcium & Magnesium is generally available at GNC and other heath stores. I experienced plenty of cramps / Charlie horses when I first started. It made me rethink my workout routine, so I switched to a ratio of 5:1 bike to run, for example if I biked for 30 mins I would transition to the treadmill for 5 mins, and over time I increased the overall time for both and slowly I noticed that my calf muscles didn’t cramp. This ratio change to my workout coupled with the extra nutritional intake of Calcium & Magnesium reduced my cramping; note, everyone’s body chemistry is different and we all react differently to workouts and vitamins. One last thing I tried that I felt helped with preventing cramps was the use of compression recovery socks (I have a pair of Under Amour socks but there are many brands available 2XU, Zoot, etc…while there isn’t enough scientific evidence to prove compression socks/pants work I felt they made a difference physically in recovery time and mental preparation for the next workout). Best of luck to you!! (you didn’t mention where the cramps where but I hope this helps)
i agree with what was said already... when i was a soccer player ( many many moons ago ) we would eat bananas everyday during the season to raise our potassium levels to avoid cramping... also i dont know why but i only drank water and lots of it, it seemed like i would cramp more if i drank the sports drinks??? like i said i dont know why and maybe it is just me but thats what worked... good luck
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Back in my more fit days, I had similar problems while swimming in my upper calf muscle just below my knee. Tended to hit me early in a workout while doing flip turns (relaxation of the muscle after effort during the swim).
Diet was always the fix for me. I stretched a ton before hand but it wouldn't prevent it from happening if I wasn't eating well. Making sure I was eating more banannas and drinking more milk was my unscientific but effective solution to the problem.
Charlie horse is a bruised muscle...cramps, where the muscle balls up can be caused by lack of ellectrolites (Gatorade) Sometimes too much water can flush these, I like low sodium V8 and bananas/yogurt.