Muscles cramping your style?

Muscles cramping your style?

There’s nothing worse than having to stop half way through a workout in agony with muscle cramps listening to the muffled giggles of the people around you. But when the haze of pain lifts, usually a few seconds later, you might be left wondering what causes these cramps and what you can do to stop them. Once you’ve ruled out any underlying medical issues by having a quick chat with your doctor, it’s time to try and work out how to get rid of those pesky cramps once and for all.

For many years dehydration has been blamed for causing muscle cramps, but before you start cursing a lack of water for your aching muscles new research suggests that even serious dehydration doesn’t affect the likelihood of you getting cramps. While grabbing a drink is almost always a good idea during a heavy workout to avoid other unpleasant side effects, such as headaches and dizziness, it probably isn’t doing anything to keep away the cramps.

As mentioned in my previous post ‘The Science of Sodium’ sodium ions play a fairly critical role in lots of processes within the body including causing muscles to relax. If you want a more in-depth explanation of how that mechanism works then go back and read that post, but long story short sodium ions go into the muscle cells forcing calcium ions out and allowing the muscles to relax. If you don’t have enough sodium to force all of the calcium out the muscle can’t fully relax and you get muscle cramps.

We always want to do our best in our training, push ourselves harder and further. Unfortunately the mind can be willing but the body might have ideas of its own. Different types of exercise place different demands on the body, so if you’re using a set of muscles you wouldn’t normally or even if you’re just having a more intense workout than usual you could be hit with muscle cramps.

With SportLyte you can keep an eye on your sodium levels and make sure you’re taking in enough sodium to avoid some bouts of cramps as well as making sure you have enough water and potassium to avoid other injuries. Sadly there is no magical way to make your workouts cramp free, but you know what they say ‘no pain, no gain’.