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Posted: 4/17/2007 4:57:21 PM EDT
I am increasing my speed for my 20 minute runs, based on how many times each week I can accomplish 20 minutes with relative ease at that pace.

However.. since I increased the speed about two weeks ago, I've begun to notice a 'cramping' sensation in my left calf muscle only. It occurs about 10 or so minutes into the run, and I generally have to slow down or a complete walk around the 15 minute mark.

My breathing is steady, I have no upper body cramps.. knees are fine.

I've never had this sensation before, it didn't occur right at the speed I am at, only a short time afterward. (I've made it to 20 minutes at the pace before, this just popped up)

Thanks in advance.
Link Posted: 4/17/2007 5:47:02 PM EDT
Is the cramp in the body of the muscle, or near one of the ends?

Is it tender after the runs?
Link Posted: 4/17/2007 5:57:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By pliftkl:
Is the cramp in the body of the muscle, or near one of the ends?

Is it tender after the runs?


I think its in the body of the muscle, its not just the lower or upper calf, but all over.

Its sore after I run, yes. But it goes away after a short while.
Link Posted: 4/17/2007 7:31:03 PM EDT
Dehydration, insufficinet intake of magnesium/potasium/calcium, or stimulants like caffeine are the primary causes of cramping. I get bad cramps all the time in pretty much every body part.
Link Posted: 4/17/2007 7:32:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DevL:
Dehydration, insufficinet intake of magnesium/potasium/calcium, or stimulants like caffeine are the primary causes of cramping. I get bad cramps all the time in pretty much every body part.


Why just very recently then? And just in that part of the body?

Just curious.
Link Posted: 4/17/2007 7:58:49 PM EDT
Poor blood flow, diabetes, circulation problems can cause this, but unless you are diabetic and over 40 I would think eating more bananas and drinking more water will help the most.
Link Posted: 4/17/2007 8:08:11 PM EDT
Cramps are more the prevalent when the weather heats up, usually due to dehydration or inactivity over the winter. Increasing your water intake and adding a daily low dose 99mg potassium supplement or a banana, should help the cramps. It worked for me.
Link Posted: 4/22/2007 2:11:46 PM EDT
It it really cramping or tightness?

My calves often get more tight when I put on the speed work. Some times you force your self to push off more with your foot using your calves when your trying to go faster. Since this is always happening with one foot I wonder if you are more left leg dominant. Or it could be the way you left foot pronates.
Link Posted: 4/22/2007 2:26:07 PM EDT
I was having a similar issue and a store that specializes in running shoes put me in New Balance shoes that are designed to cut down on protanation (sp). Been using them about two weeks and it has definitely helped.
Link Posted: 4/22/2007 2:31:48 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Sixgun357:
It it really cramping or tightness?

My calves often get more tight when I put on the speed work. Some times you force your self to push off more with your foot using your calves when your trying to go faster. Since this is always happening with one foot I wonder if you are more left leg dominant. Or it could be the way you left foot pronates.


Can't tell the difference.

I ran again on Thursday.. didn't experience any cramping/tightness this time.

I run again tomorrow mornin.
Link Posted: 4/22/2007 3:28:27 PM EDT
Diet sodas will cause this also...It is the phenylalinine...It will cause the tissues to "de-hydrate". If you drink diet tea or soda, replace with water. Also try bananas.htlift.gif
Link Posted: 4/22/2007 3:53:49 PM EDT
Do you stretch your calves out before you run? Also you might want to try a light just for 5 minutes then try stretching them. Do you get any relief when you stretch versus when you dont stretch.
Link Posted: 4/22/2007 3:54:50 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Sixgun357:
Do you stretch your calves out before you run? Also you might want to try a light just for 5 minutes then try stretching them. Do you get any relief when you stretch versus when you dont stretch.


I don't stretch beforehand.

I stretch afterwards though.. and I don't find any real relief other than to let it rest.
Link Posted: 4/23/2007 7:04:52 AM EDT
Massage your calves with a tennis ball or raquetball while you're sitting around the house or something. Really put some pressure on them. My guess is, you've got some connective tissue that's pissed off in there and that the muscles are tightening up to try and protect it. See if you can loosen up your stuff with the tennis/requet ball and see how it goes from there. If you have stuff that's tight up in there and you rub it out correctly, it'll probably hurt like hell, but if you can get it loosened up you'll feel better the next day.
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