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  1. #1
    Senior Member BikeArkansas's Avatar
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    I have decided to turn to drugs

    It is time for me to turn to drugs. I have completed 4 centuries this year, along with numerous metric centuries. Every mile century has resulted in leg cramps. I am so tired of the pain of leg cramps, so I have decided to turn to drugs.

    I drove over to GNC and started shopping. There is so much there. The operative word here is confusion.

    What drugs work for leg cramps?
    I started riding my bike to get healthy. Now I try to stay healthy so I can ride my bike.

  2. #2
    gone ride'n cyclinfool's Avatar
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    What have you been hydrating with? That may be your problem - I use a total electrolite replacement called Nuun, no cramping.
    "Of all the things I ever lost I miss my mind the most." Mark Twain
    If all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.

  3. #3
    Senior Member BikeArkansas's Avatar
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    For my latest century, which was the Hottern Hell century in Wichita Falls, TX, I hydrated all week before the ride, I took salt substitue pills, I drank power ade, I worked very hard to be hydrated in every way.

    I still cramped.

    Please note that I have done this all my life. In high school and college I would cramp in baseball or basketball quite often. I played hard, but I would have leg cramps when no one else did.

    It is time to turn to drugs, if I can find the correct drugs.
    I started riding my bike to get healthy. Now I try to stay healthy so I can ride my bike.

  4. #4
    Senior Member skiph's Avatar
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    Magesium. Potassium, but you can't get enough in 'drugs', try this, I add 1/4 teaspoon to my 'flavored' water bottle:
    Attached Images Attached Images

  5. #5
    gone ride'n cyclinfool's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiph View Post
    Magesium. Potassium, but you can't get enough in 'drugs', try this, I add 1/4 teaspoon to my 'flavored' water bottle:
    Yes - some runners make thier own capsles out of this and table salt and ground up Tums. Check out the runners forums, you may find some interesting suggestions.
    "Of all the things I ever lost I miss my mind the most." Mark Twain
    If all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail.

  6. #6
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    I take Endurolyte capsules from Hammer Nutrition and carry only plain water.

  7. #7
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    BikeArkansas-I've tried every trick and like you I still cramp to varying degrees. I consulted my physician to get his advice. I've tried all kinds of supplements, tums, hydrating very well the week before etc. I still cramp......I continue to find muscles in all parts of my legs I never knew existed......and when the cramping starts I often wish those muscles didn't exist!!

    Here is what I'm doing more recently and it seems to help some-but it is still not a cure:

    Eat at least one banana a day
    Hydrate extremely well several days leading up to the ride-keep a water bottle with fluids with you all the time
    Supplement V8 Fusion for fluids a day or two ahead of the ride-it has tons of potassium
    Take Electrolyte pills a day or two ahead of the ride and the morning before the ride
    Drink electrolyte or sports drinks during a ride rather than water-if drinking water use electrolyte pills
    Eat several bananas during a ride
    Spin easier gears!!

    The weather and how hard I push seems to have the most influence on how bad I cramp. Quinine is helpful to alleviate cramping and can be found in Tonic Water and also in over the counter meds called Leg Cramps. However I don't use it during rides. I tried Tonic Water before a ride (per my doctor's advice) and the carbonation wreaked havoc on my stomach. Leg cramps seems to affect my power output and heart rate (quinine has been and is still used for some minor heart issues) so I only use it at night when I wake up with leg cramps.

    Good luck and let me know when you find a cure.......I'll be right there with you buying drugs!!

  8. #8
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    Gatorade has about 30 mgs. of potassium per serving.
    A banana has close to 600 mgs of potassium per serving.

    I try to stay with real, whole foods as much as possible. Here are some good natural sources of potassium:

    http://www.goaskalice.columbia.edu/1740.html
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  9. #9
    Senior Member BikeArkansas's Avatar
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    I eat bananas at every stop. Also, I have tried drinking several types of fluids. Also, I have inceased my cadence considerably. As I said before, I have worked at hydrating carefully for a full week before a century.

    I really enjoy the challenge of a century, but the pain from leg cramps is draining my enthuasiam. I want to continue and will search for something to stop the cramps.

    All suggestions will be received with gratitude.
    I started riding my bike to get healthy. Now I try to stay healthy so I can ride my bike.

  10. #10
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    Check with AmGen....I hear EPO works pretty good.

    jppe is the climbing king....listen closely to his advice.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Terrierman's Avatar
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    12 oz of V-8 has 720 mg of potassium. Drinking one before cycling and if a really hard ride, one after really helps me. I use the low sodium version and then defeat that aspect by adding enough Worcestershire sauce to make me sweat. Lovely. YMMV
    It's all downhill from here. Except the parts that are uphill.

  12. #12
    Off your Donkey, lets go Burr's Avatar
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    I start taking "Potassium Pills" when I start having cramps at night. If I keep my legs a little warm when riding or coasting down hill it helps

    I have also had some kind of leg cramps all my life.
    Lifting three days keep my legs in good shape also.
    Burr,
    I Push Iron & Turn Cranks!
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    I Stay Busy, I have GOPD

  13. #13
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    I used Isostar for years and No cramps. Even had a friend that cramped bad on most rides that tried it and No More Cramps. Must be something to do with Essential salts or Vitamins- but an Isotonic supplement in my bottle works for me. I now use one called lipin-and works in the same way.

    And I did have cramps last year- when I went off the supplement for 3 months due to what may have been an allergy. Straight water on the rides and less salt in my food. Cramps hurt.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  14. #14
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    I have a similar problem. In fact, at the Hotter Than Hell, I cramped so badly, I had to hit the first aid tent. I couldn't stand up w/o cramping. I took 3 of these and drank a cup of PowerAide and 10 minutes later, I walked out and rode back to my car.

    http://www.amazon.com/Trace-Minerals...2275107&sr=8-1

    I had been taking them all day and hydrating pretty well, but I was well into no mans land (distance) for me and ended up hammering WAY too hard to get finished.

    I highly recommend these tablets and for longer rides, I take about one dose an hour (depending on how much you sweat).

  15. #15
    Senior Member big john's Avatar
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    You say you have tried different types of fluids? Have you used Perpetuem, Heed, Cytomax during the ride? Do you weigh yourself before and after the ride? The last time I had bad cramps was a hot day and I was 7 pounds lighter after. I tried to drink a lot but failed.
    I have found if I do hard climbing rides every Saturday I rarely get cramps, but if I slack off and then do a bunch of climbing, cramp city. Sometimes if I feel a cramp starting I will spin very high cadence and it will go away. Of course this won't work when climbing unless you're Lance or Andy Hampsten.
    There is a product called Sport Legs, supposed to help cramps, but I haven't tried it.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Red Baron's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by roadfix View Post
    I take Endurolyte capsules from Hammer Nutrition and carry only plain water.
    Ditto!
    **Fate is a fickle thing, and in the end the true measure of a person is not fate itself, but how they master it**

  17. #17
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    Er are you already on meds

    HI,
    Many of the meds have side effects, some raise K other's lower Sodium.
    WHen you sweat you may loose alot of your lytes or salt, most humans eat way to Much NA, and very little K, The bannana is great idea cause it prevents overload of K and also provides some energy.
    Have you had your ridding style checked you may not allow enough blood flow to the calves if your seat is not perfect height/angle.
    My guess is your and old pro, so this is a mute point.
    You may be reaching your physical limits of endurance and training, maybe you over train for that extra long ride and need to rest up more.
    Doug
    Heck what do I know I ve only road 3o miles in one day..

  18. #18
    Galveston County Texas 10 Wheels's Avatar
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    I have ridden 7,700 miles without cramps.
    Did a 100 mile ride Tuesday, another last Saturday.
    I Take 500 mg of Magnesium. 500 mg Lysine daily.
    [SIZE=1][B]What I like about Texas[/B]
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    Set F1re To The Ra1n ( NY Night Rain Ride)
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  19. #19
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    Good luck with that plan. A week from now, you can come back and report on your terrific placebo effect.

  20. #20
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikeArkansas View Post
    What drugs work for leg cramps?
    Depends on the results you want. If you just want to not mind having leg cramps your choices are many. However, I personally suggest a visit to this site instead:

    http://www.cptips.com/muspain.htm
    Oh I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused. But since their wings have got rusted, you know, the angels wanna wear my red shoes. But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain, that's when I knew that I could not refuse. And I won't get any older, now the angels wanna wear my red shoes.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Skipper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BikeArkansas View Post
    What drugs work for leg cramps?
    Bananas and water.

  22. #22
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    Do you do enough stretching exercises to keep your legs from getting tight? If you are riding lots of miles a week, your leg muscles will get pretty tight.

  23. #23
    Senior Member big john's Avatar
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    Might be worth a try. I've heard it works and you can mix up your own if it works for you.
    http://www.sportlegs.com/about/welcome.asp

  24. #24
    Ride Daddy Ride Jet Travis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skipper View Post
    Bananas and water.
    Are you trying to get us arrested?
    "Light it up, Popo." --Levi Leipheimer

  25. #25
    Yen
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    Have you ever tried a calcium-magnesium supplement? It may do the trick. I've had calf muscle cramps all my life.... they happen at night. Not often any more but boy do they hurt, enough to empathize with you.
    Specialized Roubaix Expert
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