Cramp in calf

When I wake up in the morning and stretch my legs(while still in bed I hasten to add) I get sudden and very sharp pain in either or both of my calf muscles. This does help me wake up quickly but isn't very pleasant. Any suggestions?

I run 25 - 30 miles per week, but never get cramp while running. I nearly always run in the evenings.


  • You're pregnant, Glenn.

    Does the cramp occur when you point your toes downwards or when you pull them up towards you?
  • I *hope* I'm pregnant, because I could probably make a lot of money out of it, but somehow I have doubts.

    It's when I do that first instinctive stretch out. I think I must be pulling them up towards me - a reaction to the tightness from running the night before.
  • Good tip...don't run the night the day after. Sorry Glenn, just couldn't resist it!!!
  • I think it's due to some highly technical biochemical process involving calcium ion flux across the muscle cell membranes. This has given rise to the widespread belief among midwives and pregnant women (who often get terrible leg cramps at night, usually when they "point" their toes downwards) that cramps mean that calcium supplements are needed.

    It's probably harmless.
  • LOL V-rap! "Probably harmless" is a prognosis I will treasure.

    Would it change if it turns out I'm pointing my toes the other way?
  • I don't think so, Glenn.

    "Probably harmless" is what I emphatically do NOT want carved on my gravestone.
  • Dennis Healey said that he wanted "He was a b*rstard. But he was our b*rstard".
  • Glenn, I've read that stretching is a no-no until the muscles are warmed up, so could you resist until you're a bit more awake?
  • Not to go into technical suff but could be a electrolyte imbalnce if you have not replaced correcly after you have run- ie not enough sodium chloride. As you strech you provide a stimulus to the muscle, the cells which have a altered membrane potential- and so your rather painful cramps. Try differing ways to rehydrate, increase cool down time, increase calf stretch both gastrocnemius, soleus and deep muscles. Try heel drops off a step both with the knee stright and bent to get all the above groups. I would hold for 20-30 secs at a time. Let me know how it goes if you have any luck
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