Cramp or hamstring?

I have just started running again, first time for a few years. This morning was my first time out on consecutive days and after 2 miles, I felt a bit of tightness in the back of my lower thigh. I curtailed my run there and then and walked the last mile home.

Is there a way of telling if it is hamstring or just cramp....if it is a bit of a hamstring tweak, what is the best way to treat?

I can still feel a bit of discomfort now I am home but nothing too bad.

If it is hamstring would I be ok on the elliptical while it mended?



  • Also-ranAlso-ran ✭✭✭

    Richard 'cramp or hamstring' doesn't quite make sense. Cramp is an involuntary muscle contraction / spasm, so possibly your hamstring has cramped (there are 3 muscles making up the hamstring). A cramp can present itself as a dull ache through to a piercing pain (I have had this 3 times recently during speedwork). It is easy to mix this up with minor tears, inflamed tendons etc. Lower down the thigh it is also easy to mix up with other muscles attaching near the knee, e.g gracilis, satorius ....

    Best approach for me is to rest and ice the muscle. Later strecthing out the muscles involved, then followed up by easy runs / cross training - I just keep away from anything quick.

    For you, as you have just started back running it is most likely a simple cramp. Self massage / stretch. Take it easy building up the mileage and maybe have a day off inbetween runs, or cross train on that day


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