Restless Legs (Quads)

Does any of you that experiences restless legs when trying to fall asleep? I get this the odd time. It’s not necessarily after a big ride; sometimes I get them during rest weeks. I find them very frustrating as it keeps me awake.

Anyone have any remedies?

Magnesium oil spray seems to help me both with the restless leg and the sleep. My wife is quite into her natural remedies. I’m generally a sceptic! But after complaining about this on multiple occasions I did eventually try her suggestion and it helped. Maybe psychosomatic but as long as I’m getting a good night’s sleep I don’t really care.

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Magnesium is supposed help reduce this.

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Search for “restless legs”, there are plenty of suggestions.

If reason is really magnesium deficiency: 10 Magnesium-Rich Foods That Are Super Healthy

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I’m on team magnesium, but will just caveat the last time someone asked it actually turn out to be a medical issue of sorts.

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I’ll echo what @gcarver said! :raised_hands:

I have found magnesium to be incredibly helpful for my sleep. It is definitely worth checking with your doctor to be sure that there isn’t a more serious underlying medical issue.

Because we lose magnsium in sweat, you may be at a greater risk of low magnesium during these hot summer months if you’re in the northern hemisphere.

Magnesium supplementation could help your recovery and performance in more ways than one.

Magnesium is a cofactor in over 300 different enzymatic reactions in our bodies, so the effects of low magnesium can extend beyond sleep.

Of interest to us cyclists, there is evidence to suggest that magnesium supplementation can help with recovery by attenuating muscle damage after exercise. In this YouTube short, I quickly cover a study that looked at the impact of magneiusm supplementaion on mucle damage in professional cyclists. They found that 400 mg of oral magnesium attenuated some markers of muscle damage.

If you try magnesium supplementation, start low. If you take too much, you will get diarrhea :woozy_face:.

I suggest you avoid Magnesium Oxide because of the poor absorption rate, and Magnesium Citrate because of the laxative effects.

I hope you start to see improvements :heart:. Let us know how you get on!

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In my case a note a direct correlation between my coffee intake and the restless legs effect

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I had the strangest cramps/restless legs sometimes at night - can’t even begin to explain how it felt. Since I started taking magnesium and/or electrolyte supplemnetsi haven’t had the same problem.

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I’ve been dealing with RLS for over 30 years, and it has significantly disrupted my sleep at various times. When I was younger, the issue was in my calf. For the last 15-20 years, the discomfort has shifted to my thighs, right along the IT band. When I go to sleep (or during long plane rides, etc.), it feels like an electrical current builds up slowly and can only be released by twitching. Quite annoying. I’ve seen doctors and naturopaths, had blood work done, and I am healthy and normal otherwise. But RLS remains a bit of a mystery. It’s rare for me to go through the night without waking up at least once or twice to stretch or use a lacrosse ball to ease the discomfort. There’s no single trigger or solution for me, but here’s a list of things that tend to be problematic and things that generally help:

Triggers:

  • Coffee
  • Alcohol in general, but specifically red wine and IPAs (guess what I like to drink…?)
  • Dark chocolate. Usually, one piece is okay, but more than that is a problem.
  • Sitting for long periods (planes, car trips, etc.)
  • Going to bed hungry
  • Anything that lightly brushes my feet or legs while falling asleep

Things that help (all done before bed):

  • IMS on my leg (I’m lucky, my wife is a physio)
  • Magnesium supplement
  • Protein
  • Foam rolling the full leg
  • Stretching (hamstrings, glutes, etc.)
  • Rolling on a lacrosse ball
  • Glute med and hip flexor exercises (e.g., 2 sets of 15 clamshells with a green band)
  • King-size bed

Generally, I wake up a couple of times a night. At that point, I’ll stretch my hamstrings and spend a few more minutes rolling on the lacrosse ball, which usually settles it down long enough for me to get back to sleep. It’s not ideal, but it’s manageable. Finally, in general, the healthier I eat, the less severe the impact.

I hope some of this helps.

P.S. I’ve played a lot of different sports over the years. I grew up playing explosive on/off sports and shifted to endurance activities in my mid-forties (mountain biking and gravel mainly, although starting to do a bit more road cycling). I’ve had RLS since my 20s, so the type of sport doesn’t seem to have an impact.

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Very interesting. I have had it for a long time but not very consistently. It does feel as you describe like an electric pulse that makes me compulsively fidget. I can drive me mad at times. I hope because it is inconsistent, that it could be just a magnesium deficiency. But all your remedies have aligned with what I’ve been doing to suppress the feeling. I never actually thought to look at triggers.

Thank you for sharing! Helps a lot!

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I tried magnesium earlier this year but I had stomach problems for the first time since my chemotherapy 5years ago. I also at the same time tried Rapeseed oil as an alternative to Olive oil in cooking. Perhaps I should give magnesium another go :thinking:

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I could only describe mine as a weird aching feeling that builds up gradually in intensity until you have to move to try to get rid of it. Often I was driven out of bed and had to stomp around the room. I’d get it in my arms and legs. Magnesium/electrolytes seem to have fixed it.

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