Natural Ways to Beat Muscle Cramps
Muscle cramps are a pain – both literally and figuratively. They get in the way of workouts, and can be a troublesome burden outside of the gym as well. While chronic cramping could be caused by an underlying health issue (in which case medical advice should be sought), some muscle cramps occur simply because you did not stretch well, or because you over worked muscles that have not had much action. Here are some tips to stop cramps fast so you can back to your workout or back to your normal every day routine.
Make Sure You Are Hydrated
One of the signs of dehydration is muscle cramping. If you think you have not been drinking enough water, you are probably right. Especially if you work out hard and sweat out a lot of fluid, it is important to replace it to prevent health issues and damage. Also, cramping could be caused by insufficient electrolytes like sodium and potassium, which you sweat out while exercising. So if you have been going extra hard at the gym, make sure you replace electrolytes. Eating a healthy diet of whole foods and natural foods should provide you with adequate electrolytes and essential vitamins and minerals, so opt for lots of fruits and veggies when you can.
Try Some Pickle Juice
Weird right? However, according to research, taking a swig of pickle juice could alleviate muscle cramping within seconds. According to one study, researchers found that there is an ingredient in the juice that leads the brain to send out spasm-calming signals to the body.
Cold seems to alleviate cramps by blocking nerve pathways in muscles. So if you are struggling with a Charlie horse, step on a cold concrete floor. If your quad is cramping after leg day at the gym, throw an ice pack on it. And if your calves are acting up, dip them in an ice bath bucket.
Ease In To Change
This tip goes out to all of you who are embarking on fitness resolutions this New Year. Before you dive head first in to an extreme lifestyle change, remember that the body responds better to gradual change. Make realistic goals that you can actually achieve. If you have been sedentary overall, don’t decide to go for an hour long run January 1. Instead, establish a good dynamic stretching routine with your chiropractor, and start with lifting lighter weights at the gym until you build strength. This will prevent you from overextending yourself and experiencing painful cramps.
*Disclaimer: Always consult your physician or other health care professional before seeking treatment or taking related advice herein.*
Story Credit: 3 Ways to Ease a Muscle Cramp by Faye Brennan