Many people suffer from cramps during exercise. Usually, cramping is a result of not breathing properly. The cramp is an alert of sorts – an alert that tells you to stop and take a few deep breaths. When a cramp does occur, it can often stop you in your tracks, which can make training and working out difficult. However, cramping can also be a sign of other issues – from a nutritional deficiency to an imbalance in electrolyte production in the body. In addition, working out can also produce stomach cramps and even muscle cramps. Learning how to conquer the cramps is critical if you are playing sports professionally or even if you are trying to meet various fitness goals. Here are five ways to prevent cramps during exercise.
- Breathe deeply and let your lungs absorb as much oxygen as they can. One of the main causes of cramping is not having enough oxygen in your lungs. Before you run, you want to take deep breaths – allow as much oxygen in as possible. The more oxygen dense your lungs are, the further you can go without cramping.
- Start off slow and then work your way up – don’t full sprint right away. Oftentimes, if you go for the full sprint right away, it can cause cramping. It is important to start off slow. This is especially the case if you are just starting out a workout regimen with a personal trainer from a gym like Fitness 19. It is important to build stamina before you can push yourself.
- Meditate before you workout or run – it can reduce anxiety and nervousness. Before you work out, you want to meditate and allow your mind to be focused and relaxed. Oftentimes, cramping can occur when you are nervous or anxious. If you are a competitive runner, you may experience anxiety – especially if a lot of people are watching in the stands. Right before you get to your mark, you want to close your eyes and get rid of all the clutter in your mind. This can really help reduce the anxiety and calm your nerves.
- Stretch before you workout – make sure that all your muscles are warmed up. To avoid muscle cramps and body cramps, you want to stretch thoroughly before you work out. Stretching will warm up your muscles and it will allow your body to get into workout mode. Once your body is in this mode and your muscles are relaxed, you can start to work out. If you start to work out without stretching, the cramps will most likely hold you back.
- Make sure to eat a protein and water rich diet before you train. Before you train – or even before you compete – you want to eat a diet that is rich in proteins, like chicken and eggs. Moreover, you want to eat a meal that has a lot of fruits or vegetables. Being hydrated and energized will really help reduce cramps – from side stitches to muscle cramps. In the end, fitness is important, so it is imperative to conquer your cramps before they conquer you.