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muscular component?

Yeah, I'm not crazy!! Sorry to hear there are so many of us, but perhaps if we work together we can start some sort of effort to get someone in the medical field to study this. I would suggest everyone send the link to this discussion to their gyn or anyone you know doing medical research.

I had these cramps when I was in high school and they started again in my early 30s. (I'm 34, pretty fit, small, farily slim.)

My characteristics:
-cramps like mentral cramps but debilitating
-starts anywhere from 7-12 minutes into the run, sometimes I don't feel them until after I stop running (ie to stretch once I've warmed up a little)
-they last 8-20 minutes after I stop running (depending upon how long and how hard I have run); I know they are going away when the pain is almost pulsing - alternating moments of pain and moments that are pain-free - and they go away the alternations get further and further apart
-often feel like it would be safer to sit on a toilet just in case, but have never actually had a problem
-not nearly as bad when running on grass or softer surfaces; worst when running on conrete (sidewalks)
-only time of month I am pretty confident I don't get this cramping at all is just after my period (pre-ovulation?)
-not sure how running afterwards would go for me, as I usually stop altogether, but it's definitely a mistake to run through the pain
-get the same cramps if I sprint early into a swim or even if I swim a long distance at the begining and have not warmed up for at least 20 or so minutes
-have never gotten cramps biking until recently, but I think that was mentrual-related and it went away without a break and while still biking
-once after some moderate exercise early in the morning, I did a lunging stretch leaning backwards with my back knee on the ground; I have no idea what happened but things in my lower abdomen shifted (it felt like things down there were physically moving) and I had an extreme attack of the same cramps (I wouldn't suggest trying this!) I don't use this stretch any more!
-does not happen every time I run, hardly ever when I swim now that I don't sprint (which sucks - the not sprinting part, I mean)
-***did NOT get these cramps when I was training and competing with collegiate soccer and swimming teams ONCE I was on a regular lifting program for my legs*** (I'll come back to this.)
-when I started getting these cramps regularly again in my late 20s and early 30s, I had lost a lot of muscle in my legs
-recently, when I have gone through times where I lift (lower body) regularly, I seem to get cramps less
-if I warm up VERY slowly with alternating jogging with walking (which is VERY frustrating so I am bad at doing this), I seem to be able to run without getting any cramps; (Even starting at an 8 or 9 min mile pace is too much, and I'm pretty much guaranteed to be reeling in pain after a mile.) I have not been running regularly for years now because of these cramps, so my workouts are much shorter probably than true runners. Perhaps it might be different if the distance was further.
-I have tried using a heating pad on my lower abdomen before running but I am unsure if this really makes a difference for me.
-I have also found that if I run at a slower pace, I get cramps less. I think this is because my stride is much shorter. I think I get these cramps when I have longer strides, which might also explain the cramps while swimming and why I get them if I start sprinting immediately
-my gyn did a trans-vaginal ultrasound but basically found a very small cyst above one ovary that she said is the kind that would come and go and probably resolve itself, also my uterus is inverted (am I getting the terms right?), and in case this is the weird link, one ovary is about half the size of the other
-we tried a stronger birth control which may have been helping but I had to go back to my lower does because the new med gave me more migraines
-I have very poor circulation in my limbs, especially my fingers (secondary Raynaud's Disease caused by a beta blocker I take because of my migraines)

***Overall, I'm convinced there is a muscular-component to this. Perhaps we all have different causes, but I wonder if the circulatory response we have when beginning a run affects our pelvic floor muscles and that affects our uterus or something??? I really don't know our anatomy well enough to know how they might interact, but I too have heard about the blood flow to lower abdomen organs (and muscles supporting or surrounding them, I asuume) being altered significantly during the beginning of exercise.

Also contributing to this theory is that I tend to do better with shorter strides and slower speeds - which cause less stretching, less pounding, and lower intensity, with regards to muscle use and blood circulation.

And finally, one major change I noticed between the times I have gotten these cramps and the times I have not is my muscular build. I am assuming it must be something other than just pure quad, hamstring, etc., leg strength. But was much stronger overall and drastically stronger in my legs in my early 20s, when I didn't have this issue.

Does this ring true with anybody elses?

I guess the question someone might be able to answer is how running affects the pelvic floor muscles.

-EL


Sun. Aug 29, 4:19pm

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Drink adequate water

Muscular cramps are commoner in the runners, but adequate intake of water can prevent the unwanted muscle cramp!! I was also affected by this disorder. To strengthen the pelvic floor muscle there are many exercises available such as Kejal exercise is effective. You may contract with a clinical Physiotherapist.

Saturday, May 10, 2014, 1:51 PM

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