T Nation

Cramping

Lately I have been waking up in the middle of the night with terrible hamstring cramps. I’d like to think I take in enough water but maybe not. I take about 15 grams of creatine per week, also drink coffee and beer so maybe it’s dehydration BUT I drink so much water I am in the john all the time! Anyone with any suggestions?

Cramping can also happen if the salt balance is off. You have to have balance between sodium and potassium. Sodium is easy, just put some more salt on your food. More often than not it’s the potassium, what I do, I eat more bananas!! That helps me. And they taste good:-)

Another great source for potassium without the excess carbs is cabbage.

Just thought this may help also.

Phill

If you need a slightly higher dietary potassium:sodium ratio, substitute Morton “Lite Salt” for your usual salt. By weight, it’s about 54% potassium chloride and 46% idoized salt. On food, it tastes like salt. Also, a rounded teaspoonful of it, with a LOTTA water, seems to do a fair job of post-weighin electrolyte replacement, if you have to sweat a lot to “make weight” for a contest. I’m not aware of any other salt substitute that has a chemical composition comparable to Lite Salt.

If you find that you need a lot more postassium in your diet, eat bananas and oranges.

Strength & courage,
“Coach Joe”

While you may be drinking enough water, you may not be getting enough elctrolytes. The salt substitute suggestion is a good one. You could also make a workout drink to help boost electrolytes. You can dilute gatorade or similar drink by half and then add a quarter tsp of salt (NaCl) and an eighth tsp of salt substitue (KCl). In addition, eat plenty of high potassium foods during the day. Also, often overlooked, Ca and Mg are very important for neuromuscular excitability. Many athletes are deficient in Mg. Try to maintain a 2:1 Ca:Mg ratio. Better sources of Ca:Mg supplements are either amino acid chelates or Kreb’s cycle intermediates (citrate, malate, glycinate ,etc.) I hope this helps. Keep us posted.

It could be as simple as loosening your bed sheets. Yup! A lot of bedtime cramping can be attributed to the fact that during the night most of us toss and turn. When whe try to move our leg and the covers are too tight a cramp might set in because the leg has no where to go. This used to be the case for me with calve cramps. I read this YEARS ago so I losened my sheets a bit and since then no cramps.

It could be inadequate water intake or maybe an imbalance between sodium (salt) and potassium. It could also be a muscle wasting disease or even a blood clotting disorder. Go see a good nutrionist and/or read up on the sodium/potassium pump. If the cramping hurts badly go see a doctor!

LOW ON POTASIUM!

EAT MORE BANANAS