>I wonder if any of you athletic people can help me ...
>I'm having a bit of a problem with my calves, manifesting itself as an
>intense cramp (knot) right in the middle of my calf. It's happened
>several times in the last month while swimming, forcing me to limp to
>the edge of the pool and spend 5-10 minutes massaging my leg before I
>can even flex my ankle again (much less keep swimming). It remains
>sore for several days afterwards.
> It generally happens when I don't relax my ankles enough while
>doing flutter kick, but I wonder if there's a more general problem
>with my calves being too tight. I cycle and run regularly (about
>220km/week cycling, 15-20km/week running), which is no doubt
>adding to the tightness of my calves.
> Any relevant experience, advice, or good stretches will
>be greatly appreciated.
> many thanks,
I have also had these "wonderful" experiences. Your description
doesnt do mine justice, either. One episode nearly drowned me because
it hit at the middle of the pool where there is a top-bottom "divider"
that you are not allowed to walk on (chops the pool in half lengthways
so we can train at one end while the public frollicks at the other)
and I was in the middle lane, took for ever to get to the edge and out,
I just could not stretch the calf in the pool - could not generate
enough down force! Shit, that one hurt!
Initially I was told to drink more Gatorade - obviously salts deficient.
So I drank the stuff until my skin turned green, No change.
Too expensive anyway!
Then maybe it was the cycling because that seems to put pressure on the
calves (clipless pedals), but a couple of days of abstention didnt help.
Then I tried skipping a run on swim days and immediate improvement.
I had started to ramp up my intensity and the swimming didnt like it.
So it came down to not enough recovery (in the calves) after the run.
Probably means I dont warm down properly/enough - but who has time?
Some of us have to get back to work!
I worked out 2 solutions: dont run on swim days (3/week) which quickly
got the chop, and the other was twofold: (a) schedule rest days on swim
days where possible and easy runs otherwise, and (b) cheat and do the swim
session with a pull-buoy, no kicks.
Then gradually weaned myself off the buoy's (they got too adictive!).
So now I'm back to normal, I just have to be aware.
If I know it's going to be a hard swim I hold off on today's run.
It appears I am just a "calf-y" runner!
Funny thing is I can still thrown in a "medium" cycle to the pool (30 mins
if I take a long way) and have no problems.
Jim Simmons, Lower Hutt, New Zealand ____/\o__ _ |/<_ <\