Monday, June 1, 2009

Running Update aka The Calves of Death


image via here

Lately I keep getting comments here on the blog or from people in person or on facebook "You're so amazing with your running!" I am at once flattered and at the same time wanting to say "ha! if you only knew how much I walk..." or "lately I am weaksauce!" or even "if I can do it, anyone can do it, seriously"

The running has been going fairly well. We've been going consistently 3 days a week (missing only once in like 5 weeks or something), until about a week ago, when i was running and my calves cramped up like nothing else. It hurt to run, it hurt to walk, my calves muscles decided to try to tie themselves in knots. And I was. not. happy. Grrr. So I cut that run short.

I ran the following Tuesday and the run was fine...but apparently I am either a really crummy stretcher, or an overstretcher, or I don't drink enough water, or else my body is just adjusting to the fact that I used to be a couch potato and have only now decided that this amazing body I've been given should probably be moved into action. So though the Tuesday jog went fine, Wednesday my calves cramped up in a major way (I WASN'T EVEN RUNNING, THEY JUST CRAMPED UP!!! Sheesh).

So I tried to stretch them and massage them but they did not get better. And so I skipped my run on Thursday. And then I stretched, and then I iced them (ICE, I mean come on I'm not like a track start, i just want to jog a couple miles, I shouldn't need to ice my muscles)....I was definitely kicking myself for not drinking gallons of water or stretching more or whatever it was that could have prevented this.

Anyway, the ice helped a lot and I felt much better Saturday but skipped that run just to be safe. I get to run again tomorrow for the first time in a week and I am so so excited.

Moral of the story:

drink lots and lots of water BEFORE you jog, but not too much right before or you'll feel sick....this is tricky

stretch really well, but don't overstretch. what is the happy medium, I have no idea. I guess you just discover what it is for your body. and you can google it if you want, but apparently there is much controversy over whether or not to stretch or how much (amongst runners). How can this be controversial, I'm not sure. Anyway, stretch.

drink lots of water after

and if you get muscle cramps, ice them really really well (about 10-15 minutes or until your legs start turning red and then have someone else massage the muscles for you (you can do it yourself but it's trickier)).

Anyway, so I'm running tomorrow. And I will drink lots of water tonight, a little in the morning, make lots of time for stretching...and make sure my ice cube trays are filled---just in case.

1 little remarks:

Emily S said...

Potassium helps with not cramping, as well. Lots of runners eat bananas to help out. Sorry about that!

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