Muscle cramps can be a real pain, literally. They can occur suddenly and cause severe pain, making it temporarily impossible to use the affected muscle. But what causes them? Overuse of a muscle, dehydration, muscle strain, or simply maintaining a position for a long period of time can all be causes of muscle cramps. Heat and humidity can also contribute to dehydration, which is thought to be a major cause of cramps.
In some cases, the cause is unknown. A chronically shortened muscle will have electrical alterations, since the electrical reference will have difficulty exciting the muscle fiber properly. In other words, the process starts as a muscle spasm, which is a tightening of the muscle and, if it persists, becomes a cramp. Muscle pain that isn't true cramps can occur when walking if there is claudication, which is a circulatory disorder that causes insufficient blood supply to the muscles used for walking.
It's important to take precautions to prevent muscle cramps from occurring in the first place. Make sure you stay hydrated and take breaks when necessary. If you're an athlete, consider using electrolyte supplements like Enduralytes to help keep your body hydrated and energized. You should also make sure you're getting enough rest and eating a balanced diet with plenty of protein and carbohydrates.
If you do experience muscle cramps, there are several things you can do to help relieve them. Stretching the affected area can help relax the muscles and reduce pain. Applying heat or cold packs can also help reduce inflammation and pain. Massaging the area can also help relax the muscles and reduce pain.
Finally, taking an over-the-counter pain reliever like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help reduce inflammation and pain. Gale Bernhardt was the coach of the United States triathlon team at the 2003 Pan American Games and the 2004 Athens Olympic Games. His first Olympic experience was as a personal cycling coach at the 2000 Games in Sydney. She is currently one of the World Cup coaches for the Sports Development Team of the International Triathlon Union.
Thousands of athletes have had successful training and running experiences with Gale's pre-designed, easy-to-follow cycling and triathlon training plans.Let Gale and Active Trainer help you succeed ACTIVE is the leader in online event registrations, from 5K races and marathons to softball leagues and local events. ACTIVE also makes it easy to learn and prepare for everything you love to do with expert resources, training plans and physical activity calculators.