Zebeddy Posts: 2
Hi All

I'm relatively new to Sportive Cycling and am having a real issue with cramping. It is ruining sportive and longer training sessions.
Nearly always between 45-50 miles I start to cramp and then that's it. Having said that, I do have a history of getting mild cramps just when sitting watching TV etc.

I have tried upping my fluid intake and have increased my food intake whilst riding.
I used to grind quite a lot but now try to sit at around 90rpm in order to reduce leg fatigue.

I have started stretching more to see if I can loosen my muscles off too.

Still struggling.

Anyone have any ideas or things they have done themselves to help reduce this?

Thank you to anyone who can help


  • imposter2.0
    imposter2.0 Posts: 12,028
    Fluid intake - or lack of it (delete as appropriate) may or may not have anything to do with it. As a new cyclist, it's quite likely that you simply do not have the muscular endurance/fitness to do those rides at whatever pace you are doing them at.
  • Thigh_burn
    Thigh_burn Posts: 489
    I was the same. New to riding and awful cramps.

    The main things I've found that helped are fluids and flexibility.

    Fluids on the day before the ride. Make sure you're well hydrated going into it. And by fluids I mean water. On the day, keep drinking regularly through the ride. Make sure you're drinking electrolytes in your water.

    Flexibility, stretch more, before and after rides. For some reason I'm not sure about, there are some cyclists who dismiss the need to stretch and be flexible. I can't really see why it's controversial. You might also want to see a sports masseur who can knead out the knots you've got.
  • imposter2.0
    imposter2.0 Posts: 12,028
    Alternatively, just get fitter. The only time I've ever cramped is when I've been asking my muscles to ride longer/harder than they have been used to.
  • VamP
    VamP Posts: 674
    I believe that the thinking on the causes of cramps has moved on from dehydration/electrolytes etc.

    Dr. McKinnon has done some work recently suggesting the causes are more related to the central nervous system. Spicy drinks help apparently. Worth experimenting with. ... le-cramps/
  • poptart242
    poptart242 Posts: 531
    Caley Fretz did a podcast when he was still with Velonews that said something similar, VamP.

    It was mentioned on another pod this week when they were talking abotu Wout van Aert's cramping at the end of Strade - essentially his muscles aren't used to that length of effort as he's coming out of the CX season.
  • molteni_man
    molteni_man Posts: 446
    There is some evidence that a magnesium supplement can help cramp. A friend at my local gym swears by it for this. Don’t take it myself but might be worth doing some research on it?
  • molteni_man
    molteni_man Posts: 446
    And as ever get some proper medical advice before starting to take. It was the doctor who recommended magnesium to my friend but that was specifically for him.
  • DaveyO
    DaveyO Posts: 37
    Taurine did the trick for my calf cramps on longer rides. Also, stretching is important, but if the muscle is weak that won't only do the trick. Since starting calf raises on a near daily basis, this alone has pretty much eradicated the persistent knots in my calves.