Late night Charliehorse cramps,HELP!!!
Can someone please help me with advice on charliehorse leg cramps.I get them late in the evening or while I am sleeping the night of a pretty intense ride.I have tried eating bannanas and I take two GNC Megamen sport tablets every morning.Please Help.
I sympathize, I get them occasionally myself. Have you tried stretching after the ride? I usually forget to stretch.
Stretch the calves, daily. Even on days you don't ride. Also, a foam roller will help.
I know, I go through this too. Mine get particularly bad in cooler weather.
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So which muscle is cramping?
I did a Google search on "charliehose leg cramps" and it seems to cover all of them. I can speak about my calves seizing up. What I was doing was pushing the front of my foot forward when I "stretched" while laying in bed. Yikes! My calves would just cramp up and not let go. I finally trained myself to pull the front of my foot up and back and stretch that way and problem solved.
Originally Posted by Lizard Man
A blind man searches in a dark room for a black hat that isn't there. Dashiell Hammett
this happened to me for years despite stretching. knowing potassium is key, and nanas and potatoes weren't enough, i took "magnesium potassium aspartate" supplements and the cramps went away. i ran out a week ago and they're back. i'm not even working out due to another issue and my legs are cramping.
I think you are on to something here. In one of my company's safety training sessions, we had a speaker on nutrition and hydration. It was the speaker's view that late night cramps were almost always a hydration issue. Eating bananas or other potassium rich foods is good, but you still need the fluid to carry the potassium and other minerals.
Originally Posted by dingleberry
Staying hydrated can be tricky, because your body only absorbs fluid so fast. Once you get behind the curve, you can pound down a lot of water, but a lot of it will just go right through...
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Ok,Water and bananas I understand but whats the deal with the mustard?
HarryCallahan is right, it's a hydration issue. I used to get them almost everynight until a friend told me I wasn't drinking enough water in the evening. He was right, I started drinking a bottle of water before going to bed and now I no longer get cramps. Actuall, I started drinking a lot more throughout the day as well and that helps too. A few weeks ago a friend and I went to a local bike trail that pretty good for a cardio workout and I didn't bring much water. It was hot and humid and I dehydrated pretty quickly. We jumped in the lake after the ride and before long I got a charliehorse cramp. I knew immediately it was from dehydration so I drank a ton of water and didn't have the problem again.
Drink water, gatorade, whatever before you go to bed. No alcohol.
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This is what you do
Originally Posted by Lizard Man
The only thing that will stop the cramps in their tracks are as follows.......
They all work but I think Vinegar works the fastest but pickle juice is a close second. Your cramps will be gone in about 30 seconds and won't come back that night. Works 100% of the time. Drink about 2 oz. to do the trick. As far as mustard goes it works just as well but I don't use that method so I don't know exactly how much to consume but I believe it to be about 2 condiment sizes worth. Maybe a salad with lots of dressing heavy on the vinegar might be the perfect solution before bed after a hard ride. Let me know how it works for you as it has been magical for me when I start to get them. I laugh at cramps now.
The More Things Change
Like most folk remedies, it’s unclear how or when it was started, or by whom, but pickle juice has been used to prevent and treat cramps for decades, if not longer. It recently garnered increased attention when the Philadelphia Eagles used it—among other strategies—in their season-opener against Dallas. The Eagles won by a huge margin, unexpectedly, in extremely hot Dallas conditions. But attentive viewers of the pregame TV broadcast may have caught Terry Bradshaw say that, because they were forecasting temperatures as high as 140 degrees on the field that day, the players ought to be drinking pickle juice. Apparently, the Louisiana native regarded pickle juice as a staple in preparing for particularly hot games.
While no claims were made afterward about pickle juice as some sort of performance-enhancing drug, a flurry of media interest followed, citing it as a miracle cure for the effects of playing in the heat—namely, dehydration and cramping. A couple of months before that game, I had given a brief oral presentation at the NATA’s Annual Meeting in Nashville on my experience treating one athlete’s chronic cramps with pickle juice. Up to that point, I had treated about 100 athletes prophylactically with pickle juice—without a single failure—but this was one of the first athletes I had treated for acute cramps (see Sidebar, “A Shot A Day”).
I am by no means the only athletic trainer using pickle juice to prevent and treat muscle cramps. The Eagles athletic trainers reportedly heard about it from an athletic trainer at Iowa State and had been using it throughout most of their training camp. I first heard of the strategy about five years ago from a coach in El Paso, Texas. Apparently, in many parts of Texas (and, perhaps, neighboring Louisiana), they had been using it for years. It seems to be a well-known cure there, but no one seems to know where it first originated.
Exactly how it works remains a mystery as well. But the key ingredient seems to be the vinegar, because vinegar alone and mustard have yielded results similar to pickle juice.
Dr. Robert E. Agee of the Alabama Sports Medicine Institute treats acute exercise-associated muscle cramps with mustard. An athlete who begins to cramp is given one packet of mustard, washed down with water, every two minutes until the muscle cramp is gone. Although no formal research has been conducted to identify if, why, or how the mustard is working, Agee has had great results getting his athletes back into the game quickly.
Since the Philadelphia-Dallas game, I have received a flurry of calls from athletic trainers wondering how to use pickle juice. Apparently, other related parties, including pickle-maker Vlasic, have been flooded by calls as well. This has created an atmosphere where everyone from coaches to the athletes themselves have been tempted to try using pickle juice as part of their daily regimen—without a clue as to how to properly use it. The most important point to make is that an athlete cannot simply expect to prepare for a game, or thwart cramps, by downing a few gulps of pickle juice. How pickle juice is used, how it should be used, and the precautions one should take when using pickle juice are discussed in the Sidebar, “A Shot A Day”.
Although science has yet to pinpoint the cause of muscle cramps, theory and experimentation have led to some reliable preventative measures. And whether you employ old standbys as treatments for acute cramps or newer methods, the emphasis should always be what is most effective—and safe—for the athlete.
Sidebar - A Shot A Day
We have been using pickle juice to prevent and treat muscle cramps at the University of Northern Iowa for the past three years. Primarily, the athletic training staff has used it as a last resort in treating or preventing exercise-associated muscle cramps. When all of the previously mentioned preventive techniques—proper conditioning, nutrition and hydration, and stretching—have been tried and have failed, we add pickle juice to the athlete’s pregame regimen. We have found that by giving two ounces of pickle juice to the athlete 10 minutes before exercise, even the most chronic cramper can remain cramp-free during high-intensity exercise.
Pickle juice also seems to effectively treat acute muscle cramps. We first found this out when an athlete who was on a pickle-juice regimen forgot to take his dose before a game. When he suffered severe bilateral cramps in his gastrocnemius, he was taken out of the game and given two ounces of pickle juice. The cramps were completely gone within 30 seconds. We have tried this technique with other athletes and found it to be universally effective, with the great majority of cramps not recurring.
Usually, two ounces of pickle juice will treat and prevent any cramp. There have been a few situations where the athlete was suffering from muscle cramps in more than one area, or the cramp was in a large muscle group, like the abdomen, and he or she was then given additional pickle juice. It is imperative that the athletic trainer advise the athlete to continue hydrating, keep a balanced diet, and to take pickle juice in moderation.
Additionally, we have treated muscle cramps by giving two ounces of straight vinegar to athletes who were experiencing an exercise-associated muscle cramp. It was found that the involuntary contraction went away in 15 to 30 seconds and did not recur. Although the straight vinegar has worked, it is very difficult for athletes to consume straight vinegar. Pickle juice is more palatable and has been accepted better by the athletes.
Vinegar is the obvious common ingredient in both mustard (which is used by some athletic trainers) and pickle juice. But, as yet, there is no experimental research that has explained the mechanism of how these treatments work.
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