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Old 08-06-2012, 08:57 PM   #1
Renejr83
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How to minimize leg cramps?

So I recently started working out again and I'm back in shape. I seem to be getting leg and foot cramps sometimes when I dive now and before I started working out I would never get them. How or what is the best way to eliminate them? I suppose I could focus on good leg stretches before a dive. Any other suggestions would be appreciated, Thx
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Old 08-06-2012, 09:05 PM   #2
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

Stretch well, drink water until your pee is crystal clear, eat some bananas or some other form of potassium. I used to cramp terribly playing ball, miserable.
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Old 08-06-2012, 11:35 PM   #3
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

+1 on lots of water the night before and during the day of the session and stretching..coconut water hydrates you pretty fast too. Cramping also has to do with cold temps so a warm suit helps.
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Old 08-07-2012, 02:05 AM   #4
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

An athletic multivitamin within 2 hours of diving works well for me, and L-glutamine is especially good when my muscles are fatigued (before, during, and after diving). You can also buy a general mix of amino acids from any health food store. I find those useful when I am doing hard diving on consecutive days. Creatine ethyl esther I take the night before; if I take it too soon before diving I feel like it actually can cause cramps.

And plenty of water. In my experience, vitamins and amino acids work better for cramp prevention if you take them before you dive. If you wait until you have cramps it is too late.
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Old 08-07-2012, 06:24 AM   #5
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

I notice if I work out or go on a long run a day or two before I dive, I get cramps or muscle fatigue. If I'm diving on sat, I start drinking at least a gallon of water on thursday to make sure my body is hydrated. Then while diving I switch to powerade or gatorade. Diving in cold water may also lead to cramping.
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Old 08-07-2012, 07:49 AM   #6
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

Magnesium.

But remember, magnesium is also so the key ingredient in laxatives.. so don't overdo it..
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Old 08-07-2012, 07:54 AM   #7
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

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Magnesium.

But remember, magnesium is also so the key ingredient in laxatives.. so don't overdo it..

i can just see it now, purging your snorkel and BAM brown water
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Old 08-07-2012, 08:40 AM   #8
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

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i can just see it now, purging your snorkel and BAM brown water


I agree with Coach also.....Potassium. You get about the most in a glass of OJ. After/Before a game my coach would pass Potassium pills out like JollyRanchers........
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Old 08-07-2012, 06:31 PM   #9
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

When are your cramps occurring? You're in shape now and your able to push your body to a place it wasn't getting to before, its a good thing!

If they are happening right from the get-go, you're likely not giving your body a suitable warmup. Pushing a cold muscule will deplete it quickly of its resources without replenishment from blood flow and cause it to cramp. Its easy to warm up the foot and calf though, stand up and do some calf raises until just before fatigue (10-15 quick ones), switch lead legs, then do the same on the other leg. Repeat. Takes maybe 5 min on the boat ride out there and you have at least started to stimulate your body to get ready for physical activity. Not the best warm-up, but easy and effective for me.

If thats not it, then its the salts (potasium, sodium, magnesium) the rest of the posters mentioned that is probably causing it. Bannanas and pills are great, but examine your diet. These sort of things will help but really shouldn't be neccessary and the cramps may be caused by a dietary deficiency from eating habits. If you are VERY active or always in the sun and constantly losing fluids, you should make it a point to oversalt your foods and eat more than you think you should. Its easy to mess up your body's balance of nutrients, and straight water is often not the fix.

Just be careful when you stretch AFTER the cramp... it's easy to tear the muscle and do damage when all you want is the pain to stop. Instead try to forcefully squeeze the muscle in question at both ends. Its like hitting a reset button, the blocked blood flow gives the cramp a chance to restabilize its chemical balance.

All things to try that've worked for me in the past, good luck!
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Old 08-07-2012, 07:20 PM   #10
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

Great advice!! Thanks to all. First thing I'm going to do I switch my leg workouts from fridays to wednesdays to give my legs time to recover. The cramps I had were in my calf and foot. I'm going to focus more of hydration on the days leading up to the diving trip also and maybe have a banana as part of my breakfast the morning of. I will definitley do some warming up and stretching the morning of. Its not a cold water issue cause I'm in Palm Beach county and water temp is in the mid 80's. I usually buy vitamin water for its electrolytes so maybe I'll have a bottle the night before or morning of.

Thanks again to all who posted with great info!!
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Old 08-08-2012, 07:29 AM   #11
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

I noticed that my leg was cramping was much more during diving when I added a weight training regimen compared to periods when I dove without much training.

Recently in the Bahamas I brought some Vitamin Water Zero drinks along. My buddy from Chicago insisted we bring them. He's a beach volleyball player and uses it. During the first day of diving I was frustrated by cramping. I hopped on the boat and drank one of the VWZs. Within a short period the cramps went away. I drank one every morning before diving after that and never experienced a single cramp as I recall.

I won't go on a dive without the stuff now. I agree of course that lots of water and also rest are important. I was pleasantly surprised though how well the VW product worked for me. I had given up drinking sports drinks because of the high sugar content. I also do not like Nutrasweet and many other artificial sweeteners. I notice bad effects from both the sugar and the artificials . This product has Stevia, which I have limited experience with, but I have noticed no ill effects from it. Please give this product a try and post about your experience.
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Old 08-08-2012, 07:41 AM   #12
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

Quote:
Originally Posted by anthropisces View Post
I noticed that my leg was cramping was much more during diving when I added a weight training regimen compared to periods when I dove without much training.

Recently in the Bahamas I brought some Vitamin Water Zero drinks along. My buddy from Chicago insisted we bring them. He's a beach volleyball player and uses it. During the first day of diving I was frustrated by cramping. I hopped on the boat and drank one of the VWZs. Within a short period the cramps went away. I drank one every morning before diving after that and never experienced a single cramp as I recall.

I won't go on a dive without the stuff now. I agree of course that lots of water and also rest are important. I was pleasantly surprised though how well the VW product worked for me. I had given up drinking sports drinks because of the high sugar content. I also do not like Nutrasweet and many other artificial sweeteners. I notice bad effects from both the sugar and the artificials . This product has Stevia, which I have limited experience with, but I have noticed no ill effects from it. Please give this product a try and post about your experience.
I will give the Vitamin water a try for sure. Thx dude!
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Old 08-08-2012, 08:19 AM   #13
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

Quote:
Originally Posted by anthropisces View Post
I noticed that my leg was cramping was much more during diving when I added a weight training regimen compared to periods when I dove without much training.

Recently in the Bahamas I brought some Vitamin Water Zero drinks along. My buddy from Chicago insisted we bring them. He's a beach volleyball player and uses it. During the first day of diving I was frustrated by cramping. I hopped on the boat and drank one of the VWZs. Within a short period the cramps went away. I drank one every morning before diving after that and never experienced a single cramp as I recall.

I won't go on a dive without the stuff now. I agree of course that lots of water and also rest are important. I was pleasantly surprised though how well the VW product worked for me. I had given up drinking sports drinks because of the high sugar content. I also do not like Nutrasweet and many other artificial sweeteners. I notice bad effects from both the sugar and the artificials . This product has Stevia, which I have limited experience with, but I have noticed no ill effects from it. Please give this product a try and post about your experience.
Also you may want to consider the Fuze Tropical Punch. I was off the sports drinks like you because of the sugar and high calorie content till I found this stuff. The whole bottle has like 10 calories and 2 grams of sugar and is delicious. Its also the best hangover medicine Ive found to date and it just so happens that the screwcap makes a perfect GoPro lens cover...
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Old 08-08-2012, 11:33 AM   #14
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

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Originally Posted by Behslayer View Post
Magnesium.

But remember, magnesium is also so the key ingredient in laxatives.. so don't overdo it..
We always chum anyways...
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Old 08-08-2012, 11:34 AM   #15
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Re: How to minimize leg cramps?

Coconut water is pretty incredible as well and is pretty easy to find in small bottles at convenience stores these days.
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