Are your legs always cramping?
We understand that it hurts and can hinder your plans. But, first thing’s first, what are leg cramps?
It’s a sharp and very sudden contraction of your calf muscle, that can normally last a few seconds or a few minutes. If you’ve ever worked out your calves, it’s a similar feeling to that burn, but at least when you’re exercising, you know what causes the tension.
If you haven’t had the stabbing pain in your legs, you’re one of the few lucky ones. But, chances are you’ve endured leg cramps at some point in your life. The worst thing about leg cramps is that they hit at the worst times like when you’re just about to fall asleep, running on the treadmill, or taking your shopping to your car. But, by far the worst time to get that stabbing pain is when you’re driving.
For some people, these Charley Horses (leg cramps) can be stubborn and don’t go away for a long time, which completely throws them off and is a sure way to be in a permanent bad mood.
Some of the worst leg cramps occur at night. What causes legs to cramp at night? Many of the causes listed below can cause leg cramps at night, but it’s especially rough on people who need to stand on concrete floors while they work all day. The pain of waking up can result in soreness for days afterward as well.
There are several reasons your legs could be cramping, but our advice is, if you’re getting them way more than you should and they’re stopping you from going about your day, then you really need to visit your doctor to figure out what’s going wrong.
We’ve put together a list of what could be causing you this sudden discomfort, if you’ve eliminated these causes then you need to make a doctor’s appointment.
We know dehydration makes people eat more because they can’t tell the difference between hunger and thirst. But, that’s not the only thing that happens to your body when your body needs water, leg cramps are a sign that your body needs to be rehydrated. The next time you feel your calf muscles tense up reach for a bottle of water and see if that was your problem.
Here’s the thing, we all assume while we’re out on the gym floor sweating buckets, that it’s all water, but it’s not just water. Sweat is a mix water, electrolytes, and minerals like sodium, calcium, magnesium, or even potassium. If your body has an imbalance or is lacking one of these minerals you’re likely to end up with cramps. So, after a workout make sure you’re nourishing your body to make up for everything it’s lost.
Sorry ladies, we know pregnancy takes a toll on your body, and this could be another one of the discomforting symptoms. But, if they’re that bad, ask your doctor if they could test your body for mineral deficiency, because the chances are your body needs magnesium, potassium, or water. Remember, get your doctor’s approval before taking any supplements.
Okay, we know, working out takes time, and sometimes you don’t have the time to stretch. But, you should be making this a priority post-workout. After an intense exercise, like running or boot camp, your nerves that run from your brain and spinal cord to your muscle get over excited and start making your muscles tense up. So, stretch it out if you want relief.
Anyone who is a gym rat knows that at some point you need to kick it up a notch and go harder than you did before. You need to remember that your muscles aren’t used to this particular intensity, so you’re likely to get cramps. But, you’ll know if it’s your routine that’s caused them because they cramps are likely to kick in when you start or restart that particular exercise. This is your body’s way of telling you that you’re doing too much way too soon, so take it down a notch, until you’re ready to kick it back up again.
Most people experience leg cramps when they’re just too tired. The causes of fatigue are numerous, you could be dehydrated, lacking minerals, have a bad diet, or you haven’t allowed your body to rest enough. You need to make sleep a priority if you want your muscle to function optimally.
Your muscles are not made to stay in one position for too long, so sitting down for too long or standing up for too long will force your muscles to start contracting and relaxing to get the movement they need. If you have a desk job, stand up now and then and go for a walk, or if you’re always presenting and standing in one place, switch it up and start walking around the stage.
If you’re taking medicine, and notice that you’ve started getting cramps, take a look at the side effects of your medication. Or it could just be the type of medication you have to take for a medical condition you have; it would be best to talk this out with your doctor to see if there is an alternative.
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