That really hurts

Howdy, friends.

So, my bizarro calf cramp that won’t go away got weirder yesterday. My left leg cramped on Tuesday, and felt awful Wednesday. I haven’t run since basically falling down in pain earlier this week.

I have done a lot of this:

Come on baby, make it hurt so good ... sometimes foam rollers don't feel like they should ... OK, enough bad song re-lyricing

Come on baby, make it hurt so good … sometimes foam rollers don’t feel like they should … OK, enough bad song re-lyricing

But on Thursday, I thought, well, things feel better, so I’ll try to swim at lunch. Or even just sort of be in the pool, to see if the water pressure helps ease things.

As I walked into the gym, my right calf started firing inside — it felt like a thousand constellations burning out or something. And then it just cramped. It was horrible. And incredibly painful. And kind of embarrassing. “Hi! I’m just cramping while walking! Don’t mind me!”

I ended up hobbling into the pool, but couldn’t even try swimming, so I came back to work. Weird. I drank a ton of water and Gatorade and just … whatever.

Last night, I wore these compression socks my boss kindly let me borrow (is that weird? We were friends before I worked here …).

Yes, compression socks with shorts and slippers. It's a good look.

Yes, compression socks with shorts and slippers. It’s a good look.

I won’t lie — everything felt better almost immediately. It’s so odd. I’ve long made fun of compression socks … oops.

But things are still bad, so I went to the Orthopedic Institute today, where my friend Norm helped me out. I’ve gone there for years for stress fractures, tendonitis, etc. They know me and are awesome. I’m grateful I haven’t been in a while — means I’m not injured.

He acknowledged my calves were a mess, mostly my soleus.

So he did some ESTIM, some ultrasound and some massage. The massage was so painful — the comment, “This might hurt” was a little understated — that I had to do labor and delivery breathing, seriously, while he did it. It was horrible.

But I hope it helps. I go back on Monday. He said it could be anything — just fatigue, the camber of the gravel road, whatever. But he also said it’s not a big deal — a little more work and it should all be fine.

I wore jeans to work today. With compression socks underneath.

It feels so good. And hey, a cutback week is always nice, right?

(As an aside, my friend Traci sent me this link today about the myth of salt and dehydration as it relates to cramping. It was good timing — and a fascinating read. I especially like the mind-body connection in there. And all the Tim Noakes quotes.)

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This entry was posted in Injury, Muscle cramps, Running. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to That really hurts

  1. Ah cool! Glad things are moving in the right direction and that you enjoyed the article. Makes much more sense to me that your “calves are a mess” than that you have some sort of electrolyte imabalance. You know – why would you only cramp in the calves? The more I run and learn about running injuries, the more respect I get for the art and science of massage. Enjoy :0)

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