Do you suffer from muscle cramps when running? There's no denying the fact that running is a highly beneficial form of physical activity. Because of its ability to increase your heart rate, as well as respiratory rate, it will strengthen your heart muscle to protect against cardiovascular disease. It's difficult to run, however, when your muscles cramp up. By making a few changes to your running routine, you can protect muscle cramps.
Stretching for just five minutes before running will lower your risk of experiencing muscle cramps. Millions of runners are guilty of hitting the pavement without stretching. In some cases, running without stretching won't cause any issues. In other cases, it can lead to muscle cramps or even physical injury. You don't have to spend a half-hour stretching. Rather, you only need to spend about five minutes stretching your arms, legs and torso to protect against muscle cramps.
Wear the Right Shoes
Don't underestimate the importance of wearing the right shoes when running. If your shoes don't fit right it -- or if they offer little or no heel support -- they may cause your leg muscles to cramp up. To protect against muscle cramps when running, you need to wear the right shoes. Stick with athletic shoes in an appropriate size for your feet. And remember, you should replace your running shoes about every 300 miles. After they've reached the 300-mile mark, they probably won't offer an adequate level of comfort and support.
Hydration and muscle health go hand in hand. If you don't drink enough water, you'll have a greater risk of developing muscle cramps when running. It's estimated that nearly two in three adults are chronically dehydrated. If you fall under this category, you may experience muscle cramps when running. So, drink plenty of water before and after you run.
Contrary to what some runners believe, you shouldn't run each day. Like with other forms of physical activity, running wears down your muscles. This is actually good because it means your body will repair and rebuild your muscles so that they are larger and stronger. If you run seven days a week, however, your body won't have the opportunity to perform these processes, thereby increasing the risk of muscle cramps. Rather than running every day, consider switching it up with a day of rest. If you run on Monday, for example, rest on Tuesday and go back to running on Wednesday.