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Severe cramp in calf during middle of night

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Last night, I woke up with a really really painful cramp in the calf of my right leg. What could have caused this? I occasionally get leg cramps at night, about 2-3 per year, but nowhere near as painful as the one last night.

Also, all day today my calf has been sore especially while walking.

Yesterday I went to the gym and worked out on the elliptical for about 40 minutes and then ran a mile on the treadmill. I drank plenty of water, as a always do. So I don't think I was dehydrated.

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Calcium and magnesium are often at work...does chewing tums help?  It's also possible that there's another deficiency, my dad had an odd type of vitamin D deficiency which took about a year to sort out.

Original Post by smw:

Calcium and magnesium are often at work...does chewing tums help?  It's also possible that there's another deficiency, my dad had an odd type of vitamin D deficiency which took about a year to sort out.

 The calcium in Tums is of minimal value as it has very low absorptability.

 If this continues to be a problem, I would consider adding Calcium Citrate 500mg, vit D3 1000 IU, and 400mg Chelated Magnesium about an hr before bed. These 3 nutrients are dependant on each other-to put it plainly) and supplementing 1 w/out the other can lead to imbalances).

 Leg cramps are quite often a sign of mineral deficiency that is easily corrected. Ask MD to check blood levels of electrolytes (sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium) as well.

Original Post by smw:
my dad had an odd type of vitamin D deficiency which took about a year to sort out.

Oh? I'm vita D deficient, or so my doctor has told me with some concern, and I get KILLER leg cramps every few nights. =/ It's usually my calves, but sometimes even my hands, feet and toes which cramp up. Glad to hear that this could possibly be the reason why.

i heard potassium, when this was happening to me..but i ate so many f anf vg i dont see how i was low on amy vitamins. take a break from the eliptical... change it up.  i only got them when i was doing the elliptical every day,  and the climbing one,  i got them so painful,  it would freak the bejeasus out of my husband!  i stopped all guy 2 years ago and have not had them since.... not saying to sstop the gym and the elip is my fav machine but change it up and see if there is a diffrence

Get checked for parathyroid and different D endocrinologist is a really good specialist to see if you're having issues of these types.

This has happened to me, is it like it last about 2 min, and you can't move at all because the pain gets worst. After the two min, it disappears completly?

I used to get the same shooting pain in my foot and leg while I was anorexic. It was because of a myriad of deficiencies, mainly magnesium. Shooting pain is a symptom of magnesium deficiency.

It was aggravated by overexercise, though. It was pretty scary because these shooting pains would usually occur while I was driving home from a long session at the gym.

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I get this every so often as well.  However, I find that if I make sure to stretch after my workouts, like 3 different leg exercises, 20 seconds each, I tend not to get them.  So maybe try that?  Hope that helps!

Another name for this is "charlie horse".  I have gotten these in the middle of the night and they can be so painful they wake me up from my sleep.  It is usually the next day where my calf muscle is sore.

Things that can cause charlie horses are overworking of that particular muscle and lactic acid builds up.  After you workout I suggest you take extra time to stretch out that muscle. 

Also increase your water intake and incorporate more potassium into your diet; such as a banana everyday.  They are loaded with potassium.

Another cause can be iron deficiency.  I had some very severe ones over the summer and figured it was dehydration/electrolyte imbalance but nope, super low iron.  Just another idea.... 

LOW IRON!!! Leg cramps RUINED my life until I started taking iron supplements for 6 months. They NEVER bother me anymore.. it was the best decision I ever made. Thank GOD for iron supplements! :)

this is exactly whats been happening to me it would only happen in the middle of the night except once recently it happened when i was awake, i would get them occasionally a few times a year but now all of a sudden i get them once or twice a night. and for 3 days now my right leg has been sore after a really bad cramp

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