Cramp in calves, any new suggestions?


I've got a big race on Sunday, (Tough Guy) which involves a lot of cold water.
I'm getting bad cramps already in my calves, so goodness knows what they will be like when I hit the freezing lakes.

I'm eating more salt, but it's making no difference.

Any other suggestions??

Lots of water and bananas. Potassium in the bananas fights the cramp...and some zinc tablets if you can get them. Im a bodyboarder and the cold water during the winter is a bugger for cramping so an hour before Im going in I tamp all that stuff down my throat. Can usually hold off for a couple of hours in the sea no bother in this weather.


I'll be running in leggings, never wear shorts.
The cramps aren't when I'm running, just when I'm sitting still. Though I can see it happening when I hit the cold water.

It gets real bad & is hard to get rid of. Pulled a muscle just trying to ease the cramp.

i'm eating loads of pasta with tons of salt all week.

I always eat bananas on race day anyway, so will eat a few, plus energy drinks.


War Hero
Stinging Nettles on your hoop. It wont cure your cramp,but it will take your mind of it!
I suggest staying at home. Chilling out on the sofa infront of a good DVD. Perhaps order a pizza?


you don't make it too clear if these cramps are as a result of the fitness or something you experience all the time.
cramps can be a consequence of
a) dehydration
b)low salt
c)restriction of blood flow
d)restriction of muscle movement

and other things! If you wear boots, are they too tightly tied around the top of the boot/lower end of the calf..
Have you had an injury to one or both calves in the past, which could mean that better warming up/stretching (although the medical jury is out on this one) is essential. Calf length socks could help, unless they are going to hold cold water against the skin..
I'd try a number of things to eliminate the negatives because if this is a regular thing you need to sort it out now mate. Good luck
If they don't give you any trouble when you're running you should be ok mate. I recently did the Grim Challenge in aldershot and had similar worries pre race. The ponds were bloody freezing and i wore shorts but had no problems.

Just keep your electrolyte levels up with a sports drink about half an hour before and you should be ok.


Creepy, i don't have any of those problems. Have no idea why i keep getting cramp.
Never get it while running.

Just worried I'll get mega cramp at Tough Guy in that cold water.
Seen videos of divers pulling people out with cramp, and don't want to look like a mong.
If you are getting cramps in your legs now without getting into the water - take your running shoes off and stand still with your feet flat to the ground. Get your running shoes checked.


War Hero
Harry_Boomers said:
Stinging Nettles on your hoop. It wont cure your cramp,but it will take your mind of it!

:D :D That just struck me as funny. Thanks.

Creepy, thanks for your info. I am starting to become elderly and the bastards hit me at about two or three in the early am. Straight from a deep sleep into agony. I Will look further into those things that you have suggested. Good man.


Indian Tonic Water contains Quinine which helps reduce cramps, a glass of tonic a day usually helps
I too was having pain in my calves and uppper thighs, not cramp so much as muscle tightness. Hit Boots yesturday and now have some Multivitamins with Zinc and Magnesium as well as some Glucosamine Sulphate and Chondroitin Sulphate pills. Coupled with 4x bananas and plenty of salt on my lunchtime pasta, the tightness was gone in 12 hours and I bashed out a good run this morning. Can't thank everyone on this thread enough for the advice, and I now swear by these pills. Cost a fortune though...!

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