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Thread: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

  1. #1
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    Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Hi:

    I've been having really bad cramping in both legs in the calf and the side of my leg that runs up from my ankle.
    I drink lots of water and my doc. had me taking calcium and magnesium.

    I've also started using a foam roller.

    These are literally cramping my swimming style and how often/far I can swim.

    Any ideas or suggestions.

    Thank you.
    Nancy

  2. #2
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Quote Originally Posted by Nancy120 View Post
    Hi:

    I've been having really bad cramping in both legs in the calf and the side of my leg that runs up from my ankle.
    I drink lots of water and my doc. had me taking calcium and magnesium.

    I've also started using a foam roller.

    These are literally cramping my swimming style and how often/far I can swim.

    Any ideas or suggestions.

    Thank you.
    Nancy
    I used to have similar leg cramps that I rarely have now after I improved my kicking technique (smaller kicks) in the freestyle and also backstroke. Not sure if you are having problems in any particular stroke or not. I will occasionally still get them if I swim over 3500 yards in a workout.

  3. #3
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Do you stretch before swimming? I do alot of stretching before and after, since I tend to have tight muscles.

  4. #4
    Very Active Member laineybug's Avatar
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Make sure your ankles are relaxed and you don't point your toes when you kick.

    Also check your Vitimine D levels. I have a medical condition that often interferes with D. When my D levels get low I get cramps, I ache all over and my bones are tender to the touch. I also experience cramps 'big time' when my Synthroid needs adjusting. When I say big time I mean cramps in my feet, calves, hamstring, hands and forearms. Has your doc checked your D and thyroid?

  5. #5
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Quote Originally Posted by Nancy120 View Post
    Hi:

    I've been having really bad cramping in both legs in the calf and the side of my leg that runs up from my ankle.
    I drink lots of water and my doc. had me taking calcium and magnesium.

    I've also started using a foam roller.

    These are literally cramping my swimming style and how often/far I can swim.

    Any ideas or suggestions.

    Thank you.
    Nancy

    Nancy, sounds like you need to introduce more potassium into your diet. Try eating a banana or and orange before your work out. This has always worked for me.

  6. #6
    Very Active Member Gary P's Avatar
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    I'm struggling with the same issue. Almost always happens on the second hard set of a workout, often instigated by a hard push off the wall. I eat at least one banana a day; even if I strategically time it ahead of the workout that doesn't help. I've tried drinking diet tonic water for the quinine; seems to help a little but not completely. I stretch before workouts and in between sets with little effect at preventing the cramping, although I have figured out how to stretch out a cramp enough to continue swimming at a moderate pace.

    Next on the list to try is magnesium and if that doesn't work then pickle juice.
    Last edited by Gary P; October 6th, 2014 at 12:18 PM.

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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    I was having a similar problem and found that if I don't stretch before I swim I didn't have as many cramps. Take it for what it's worth but that's my two cents.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    It could be mild sciatica or disc compression in your lower back. I had severe compression at L5/S1 and all the bananas in the word wouldn't stop the cramps in my calfs and ankles. All those nerves are connected. An MRI or at least a talk with an orthopedic specialist might do a lot of good.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nancy120 View Post
    Hi:

    I've been having really bad cramping in both legs in the calf and the side of my leg that runs up from my ankle.
    I drink lots of water and my doc. had me taking calcium and magnesium.

    I've also started using a foam roller.

    These are literally cramping my swimming style and how often/far I can swim.

    Any ideas or suggestions.

    Thank you.
    Nancy

  9. #9
    Very Active Member swimlong's Avatar
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    It could also be that your calves are not used to the explosive exertion of pushing off the wall. Every flip turn is like a plyometric jump…so even 1500m has the equivalent of about 60 jumps. If you did that on land, your legs would cramp or at least be sore. So, aside from trying all the other suggestions mentioned, you might do some dry land plyometrics to build calf muscle endurance/strength.

  10. #10
    Very Active Member __steve__'s Avatar
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Could it also be your ankles are a little stiff and you have to keep your calf flexed to hold feet streamlined? Walls make my lower calf and feet fatigue, but when fully flexed (like when streamlined), the outer calf seems to take the load.

  11. #11
    Very Active Member Gary P's Avatar
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Quote Originally Posted by Gary P View Post
    Next on the list to try is magnesium...
    I started regularly taking a magnesium supplement about 30 days ago and my calf/foot/toe cramping issues have almost completely subsided.

    Could it be coincidence, and the real reason is simply my conditioning finally catching up with my ambition? Maybe. But I'm not gonna quit taking it to find out.
    Last edited by Gary P; February 12th, 2015 at 07:37 AM.

  12. #12
    Very Active Member Bill Sive's Avatar
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Drink pickle juice.

  13. #13
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Pickle juice?? With a straw? I'll go with the banana!

  14. #14
    Very Active Member Bill Sive's Avatar
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    Re: Leg Cramps/Calf and side of Calf

    Quote Originally Posted by orca1946 View Post
    Pickle juice?? With a straw? I'll go with the banana!

    Yes, pickle juice. It works for me.
    http://runnersconnect.net/running-nu...muscle-cramps/

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