So, yesterday I was in the pool. I just finished a workout — a speed over endurance set — and I was having some fun with some drills using my flippers when BAM!
OH MY GOD THE PAIN.
I got the worst charley horse I’ve ever had mid kick. It was so bad that I had to hang on to the lane and paddle back to the wall with my arms. I reached down on my left calf and I could both feel and see the knot where the charley horse was.
This wasn’t the first time I had gotten one. A few times, usually around the taper part of marathon training, I would get them when I was sleeping.
It’s like this intense, knotted pain in my calf that feels like someone stuck a knife in and started twisting it around. It’s abrupt (and would wake me up out of a deep sleep). And then after a few seconds, it passes.
It had happened once before to me in the pool. And sometimes when I am pushing off the wall in a flip turn, it feels like it might be coming on.
The weird thing about the spasm yesterday was that it still feels … weird … today. I went on a short run tonight and it felt a little tender.
According to this helpful forum, these are caused by:
- dehydration (though I don’t think that was the culprit yesterday)
- potassium deficiency (possibly, but I’m sure I eat > 100% my daily value most days)
- overuse (also possible, but how can I be using my calf more now that I’m swimming? I never got these running.)
- not warming up slowly (but it was the end of my workout?)
- the need to stretch more (ding ding ding I think we might have a winner.)
When I was running more often I was so good about staying on my yoga practice. Not having run as much, I’ve fallen off the wagon.
Still — ow! I wonder why these seem so common in swimming? Just look how often swimming is mentioned in relation to charley horses in a yahoo answers query: