Side cramps

  • G_rocco

    Posts: 20

    May 08, 2008 6:58 PM GMT
    so I'm new to running, (witness my adventure in the 'bruised balls' thread) but have so far worked myself up to 20 min non stop running (with 5 min warmup/cool-down bringing me to 30 min total)

    Sometimes I get that nasty cramp in my side, that makes breathing difficult and leaves me gasping. It doesn't happen every time, maybe one out of 3 runs.

    What gives? How do I avoid this?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 09, 2008 12:00 AM GMT
    Cramps typically mean that you aren't getting enough oxygen to the muscles.
    Breathing deeper (not necessarily harder) can help to alleviate this. Also, if you can slow yourself to a slow jog and put your hands behind your head, you increase the size of your chest cavity, allowing your lungs to inflate more and thus more oxygen to get into your body.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 09, 2008 1:46 AM GMT
    What IamwhatIam said and...

    Cramps can be caused by not being properly hydrated. Drinking water throughout the day, and watching things that can/do dehydrate you such as caffeine and alcohol will help. Also having a stronger core will help. I do ab exercises at least 3 times a week. If I skimp I'm liable to get side stitches as well.
  • NYCguy74

    Posts: 311

    May 09, 2008 4:11 AM GMT
    It also can be a result of your breathing.
    In Basics. When running your organs -namely the liver- bounce (much like your external organ problems from the other thread). Improper breathing can cause stress on the ligaments that hold them in place.
    Focus on breathing deeply, and exhaling when the left foot hits the ground instead of the right.
    And try not to eat too close to running

    for more detailed info use the google - Runnig Side Stich
    The first couple links are pretty good
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    May 12, 2008 4:59 AM GMT
    NYCguy74 saidIt also can be a result of your breathing.

    Typically means you're breathing is off.
    SLOW DOWN! Breathe long and deep...
    I'm a long distance runner and now and then I STILL get cramps....typically I've found it happens when I've not been able to find my stride and my breathing gets f*cked up as well. I will slow down my pace and focus strictly on my breathing...breathing as deeply as possible without sounding like I'm sucking in wind....if you're huffing and puffing its a sure sign you're running too fast and you're breathing is obviously off.
    Don't stop running when you feel the cramps....just as soon as you feel them coming on, slow down and breath in....but keep going.,...eventually, they go away if you get yourself under control.
  • G_rocco

    Posts: 20

    May 12, 2008 6:27 PM GMT
    Thanks for the tips, I will keep them in mind and try them next time it happens.
    My BF was telling me it was more related to what I've been eating/drinking.
    Avoid caffiene/alcohol? What's a guy supposed to drink then icon_lol.gif
    I work pretty hard at staying hydrated; a nasty bout with bronchitis this winter, and all the singing I do have me carrying around a nalgene waterbottle like it's a security blanket.