Couch to 5K
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Can poor hydration contribute to calf pain?

Today I went out for W4R1 (again) full of optimism and not having had the usual 'battle with the bed' episode. Not a cloud in the lovely blue sky, gentle cool breeze - perfect! On the first 5 min run my calf muscles were very painful. Never had this before. Slowed the pace. Had to negotiate a whole pack of dog walkers and their many dogs, which gave me a little respite.

I have never been aware of my muscles before, only struggled with stamina/breathing. I was aware last night that I hadn't had my usual input of water through the afternoon and evening.

It was a real struggle to get through the runs - pain not stamina. Had another slow down when I was confronted by a loud, barking, teeth barred growling collie dog in the middle of the path. Gestured to the owner and shouted 'Get your dog BACK!'. It was with 2 others so I slowed my pace to get past them - and promptly jogged off briskly until I was out of sight of them. Grumpy and in agony in my legs!

Problem is I am not sure if I can count it as a proper run. At times it was a bit feeble. When I got home I discovered that I hadn't taken the Metformin last night. Maybe that didn't help either.

Any ideas?

7 Replies

Dehydration can cause all sorts of problems, like cramp, headaches, bloated stomach, dizzyness when its extreme and confussion. I also think it contributes to many injuries but its only my opinion. I walked a lot yesterday and played badminton for 90 minutes last night so didn't have the usual weekend tipple instead I had a big glass of dilute orange juice mixed with tonic water, the tonic has quinine in it which helps prevent cramping. Great to drink if you've had an energetic day. Nice to drink with gin or vodka added ;)


That sounds like a nice drink. I will give it a go. My husband needs tonic water to prevent night cramps in his legs. Thank you for the tip. And a tip for you - your badminton playing is really inspiring me. I had thought of trying it again a while ago but didn't do anything about it because I knew I couldn't run about. You've shown me that one day I can. Thank you! I used to enjoy badminton!


Beek I had a smashing time last night, first go of badminton in over 25 years, my hubby said its nearer 30, he could be right too. Don't put it off any longer, there have been a few runners commented on by earlier blog, its just another way to mix up our fitness routines, very sociable too.

I get night cramps like your hubby so often drink tonic, you have to make sure its got the quinine added some of the supermarket's own brands don't always state it so I don't buy theirs'


Thank you so much for taking the trouble to get back to me. I will make sure to read the labels and get the quinine version. I think my last time I played badminton was nearer 30 years ago too. I will seek out the local club on the library notice board tomorrow morning - it may have to be Tuesday if it is shut for BH. Thank you for the inspiration! At 66 I find so many people tell me to slow down a bit and I'm not ready to (I'm only 21 in my head but my body knows better today - I'm aching a bit!)


Age is just a number, I'm only 36 this year, a bit dyslexic but otherwise fine ;)


Beek - I just read your post and picked up on the night cramps bit... Has your husband tried magnesium lotion? This is good for cramps of all sorts, forget the tonic water!

Have a look at this product, plus read-up elsewhere the benefits of magnesium. Most people are deficient but don't know it (I didn't even know you could be magnesium deficient?):

I use it for hormonal issues, it's great for allsorts of health 'problems'. Let me know how you get on :-)


There was a question on here last week about running with PMT pain problems etc did you reply with this info as it may well help that runner. I didn;t know about this either.


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