Muscle cramp is normal?

shieldg

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Hello! I have been training twice a week and i have been having muscle cramps! Is muscle cramp normal or do they stop happening once you have been training for a long time?

If its normal, does that mean everyone including those that have been training for years train with muscle cramps? I cant imagine training with muscle cramp, it hurts!
 

Bill Mattocks

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Hello! I have been training twice a week and i have been having muscle cramps! Is muscle cramp normal or do they stop happening once you have been training for a long time?

If its normal, does that mean everyone including those that have been training for years train with muscle cramps? I cant imagine training with muscle cramp, it hurts!

In my experience, they go away. They're caused by a build up of lactic acid in the muscle tissue you're tearing down. I typically get them at night in my calves and feet.

However, I've only had them during times of intense workouts that stressed my body to the max. At age 18 in Marine Corps boot camp, and recently when I lost a lot of weight and was hitting the dojo and the gym with great intensity. They have stopped since I got back to a reasonable fitness level.

When I mentioned them to my doctor, he recommended something that I did not think would work, but I tried it and it did - tonic water. The kind with quinine in it.

I just mixed it with some sugar-free lemonade and drank it down, one 8 ounce glass before bed. No cramps for several nights afterwards. Don't know if it is a real or placebo effect, but I found that if I started to get cramps again, I drank a glass of the tonic water/lemonade again and they went away instantly, even if I drank the glass of water minutes into the leg cramps.

I am informed that drugstores in the US used to sell quinine tablets, and they supposedly worked even better, but the FDA forced them to be removed from the market. What is sold as 'quinine tablets' on drugstore shelves in the USA now is 'homeopathic' quinine, which means that there is very, very, very, little quinine in it. Like .0000001 percent or so. In my opinion, homeopathic remedies are worthless money-wasters, but YMMV.

http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=1463087
 

granfire

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sometimes a lack of potassium does cause cramps. eat more bananas or supplement, smallish pill, cheap.

well, homeopathic medicines work, why, nobody knows. I thin quienine was used to treat malaria....or something down the line. I just like to drink tonic water now and then when sweet stuff gets on my nerves...(besides, you can put some gin in there...)
 

Bill Mattocks

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sometimes a lack of potassium does cause cramps. eat more bananas or supplement, smallish pill, cheap.

well, homeopathic medicines work, why, nobody knows. I thin quienine was used to treat malaria....or something down the line. I just like to drink tonic water now and then when sweet stuff gets on my nerves...(besides, you can put some gin in there...)

Quinine was and is used to prevent malaria. However, .00000000001 percent quinine in a water solution is, well, water. My humble opinion.

The idea behind homeopathic remedies is that the smaller the percentage of something is in the medicine, the more potent it is. That, to me, is absurd.

However, I realize that there are many people who believe in the power of homeopathic remedies. Please feel free to disregard my opinion on the matter.
 

Jenny_in_Chico

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I occasionally get cramps in my pecs and/or calves from training. I treat the problem with a double-pronged approach: intense stretching of the problem areas before AND after a training session, and salt/potassium supplement coupled with proper hydration.

Keep in mind that in the US, K+ suplement tablets are only 99mg a tablet. There are about 500mg of K+ in a single banana. So you might have to take up to 10 pills a day to address the problem, which is what I take (5 in the morning, 5 after my workout). Most people get enough K and salt in their food and they don't have to supplement, but I don't eat processed foods (lot's o' salt in those) and I sweat buckets when I train. It can be a challenge to get your Na/K ratio in balance, but it is worth it if you're suffering from a deficit (which I was, I also had problems with extreme fatigue).

I've never tried quinine pills, but when I had malaria and no access to western meds, quinine water helped! I never knew it could be a treatment for cramping. Thanks, Bill! You're the bomb, as always. :)
 

granfire

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Quinine was and is used to prevent malaria. However, .00000000001 percent quinine in a water solution is, well, water. My humble opinion.

The idea behind homeopathic remedies is that the smaller the percentage of something is in the medicine, the more potent it is. That, to me, is absurd.

However, I realize that there are many people who believe in the power of homeopathic remedies. Please feel free to disregard my opinion on the matter.


LOL, no, not disregarding. As I recall there has been clinical proof, if not in the US so in Europe or Chine about it's effectiveness. Considering it works on animals...

But that is really taking it too far away from the topic and there is more in a bottle of tonic water at any rate. ^_^
 

Miles

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Hello! I have been training twice a week and i have been having muscle cramps! Is muscle cramp normal or do they stop happening once you have been training for a long time?

If its normal, does that mean everyone including those that have been training for years train with muscle cramps? I cant imagine training with muscle cramp, it hurts!



Muscle soreness is fairly common when you are starting a new training regimen. The soreness will go away once your muscles acclimate to the new stress you are placing on them.

Muscle cramping should not be common occurrence but if it persists, I'd see a doctor.
 

Marginal

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Quinine was and is used to prevent malaria. However, .00000000001 percent quinine in a water solution is, well, water. My humble opinion.

The idea behind homeopathic remedies is that the smaller the percentage of something is in the medicine, the more potent it is. That, to me, is absurd.
Hitting water with a glass rod preserves the potency of the original mixture. It's pure syience.
 

Bill Mattocks

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I've never tried quinine pills, but when I had malaria and no access to western meds, quinine water helped! I never knew it could be a treatment for cramping. Thanks, Bill! You're the bomb, as always. :)

I didn't know about it myself - doctor suggested I try it, I did, and it worked! I was rather amazed, to put it bluntly. I didn't think it would.
 

K31

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I was having cramps in both my abdominals and shoulders/pecs during class. I actually had to convince myself during the first incident that I wasn't having a heart attack. I had been sweating quite a bit during workouts and I asked my doctor to check my magnesium and calcium levels. My Magnesium was very low and I started taking supplements. A short time later they stopped completely. I'm told that it is very easy to go overboard on Potassium so I would have that check before starting to take supplements for that.
 

Jenny_in_Chico

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I'm told that it is very easy to go overboard on Potassium so I would have that check before starting to take supplements for that.

I'm one of those weird people who micro-manage their food intake for health reasons. I input my daily nutritional intake into an internet tool called NutritionData.com, and it tells me exactly where my deficiencies and excesses are with respect to calories, carbs, fats, proteins and vitamins/minerals.

But I also think it is smart to discuss this issue with a physician, espcially if the problem persists after proper hydration and electrolyte replentishment.
 

TX_BB

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Cramps are not the norm for a healthy person. They typically can come from dehydration, overuse, bad circulation, a bad diet or illness.

Bad Diet - If you eat normally (enough calories and minerals) this is usually the easiest to fix.

Dehydration Have a 12oz glass of water before and after your workout. Use a little Gatorade or similar beverage if you are profusely sweating in your workouts.

Overuse As long as you are not doing 2-3 hour high intensity workouts, daily or training the same muscle group to exhaustion every day things should be ok.

Bad Circulation - Stretching the effected muscle, massage and active motion of the muscle (cool off exercises) helps blood flow. This helps remove cellular waste and allows the body to cool down.

Illness Get well :)

During times when you have dehydrated your self or generally abused your body take these steps. Massage the area in question or if you can get a full body massage. Drink plenty of fluids including a little sports drink. Stretch the effected areas and place a cup of Tonic water next to your bed prior to going asleep.

If you are still having problems after this, get to the Doctor where they need to check blood and blood flow at minimum.

Hope this has been helpful
 

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