A little over a year ago, our team was contacted by an aging semi-pro cyclist (we’ll call him “Bob”).
Bob reached out because he’d had a recent increase in muscle cramps at night. His legs, in particular, would cramp so badly that they would wake him up. He also started getting something he described as the “creepy crawlies”—an uncomfortable series of muscle spasms that would occasionally travel through his extremities.
I knew exactly what Bob was talking about. The technical term is “Benign Fasciculation Syndrome,” which is when your muscles involuntarily spasm in fast sequence. It can look or feel like you have things crawling beneath your skin. If you’ve ever had this experience, you know exactly what I mean.
Bob was struggling pretty hard with fasciculation and night cramping, even though he used electrolyte replacements regularly. He told us that he was also taking pure magnesium every morning, in the form of magnesium glycinate capsules.
We got Bob on our liquid minerals (Electrolyze and Micro-BOOST), plus one Electro-BOOST capsule per day. We also got him a bottle of our Insta-Lytes cramp release spray. Bob started using the spray at night for his acute cramps. We told him to spray his legs just before bed and he immediately saw a huge reduction in his night cramps and began sleeping through the night. The first big win!
Over a month or so, Bob stopped taking his other mineral supplements (the electrolyte drinks and magnesium glycinate) and only used BEAM Minerals for mineral replenishment.
After about 60 days, Bob reported that he no longer needed to spray his legs at night and his creepy crawlies, though not completely gone, were dramatically reduced. He went through the winter this way, noting that he also had better energy and more stable mood than he usually did in the colder months.
When spring came around he started training for a cycling race. Bob’s first thought was that since he’d be working his body more, he should give himself a bit of extra magnesium. He started with some magnesium glycinate, as he wanted something that he believed would be more bioavailable. After just 2 days, his cramps returned with a vengeance. On the 3rd day he had such bad creepy crawlies after his training ride that he sent us a video of them. On the 4th day Bob started cramping mid-ride in his calves and thighs.
What’s the deal? Why did taking magnesium cause Bob’s cramping and fasciculations to return? Shouldn’t more minerals be better for you, especially if you’re training harder?
The answer is a bit more complicated than that. Here are three takeaways from Bob’s experience that can help you replenish your mineral stores more effectively.
Balancing Your Minerals: 4 Takeaways from Bob’s Story
First, refilling your mineral stores is not like filling up the gas tank in your car. Your body uses minerals in a complex and variable way. Different minerals deplete at different rates and work with one another in various parts of your body. In many cases, minerals work in balanced pairs. For example, the ratio between magnesium and calcium is as important as their individual levels in your body.
Taking a high dose of a single mineral can lead to more problems than solutions. When Bob decided to up his magnesium intake, he gave himself way more magnesium than his body needed, which created an imbalance in his other mineral levels.
Single mineral supplements can pull your body further out of balance. You’re better off taking a full-spectrum mineral supplement that gives you a balanced ratio of all the essential minerals your body needs.
A much better solution for Bob’s replenishment requirements would have been to simply take an extra shot of Electrolyze™ and mixed it in his water bottle.
Second, as Bob began training for his cycling events, it made sense that he would want to provide more minerals to his body. However, a better way for Bob to increase his foundational mineral support would have been to add one capsule per day of our Electro-BOOST™. Though Electro-BOOST is powder and does need digestion, it is also highly concentrated and acts like “time-release” mineral replenishment in the body.
Third, most minerals don’t do all that much for you unless they get into your cells. Even though Bob took a large amount of magnesium, he probably didn’t absorb much of it into his bloodstream and he assimilated even less into the cells. There’s a good chance most of the magnesium glycinate simply sat in his gut, absorbing water and further dehydrating him (which led to his increased cramps).
I talk to people every day who take boat loads of magnesium and potassium and still have cramping and creepy crawlies as well as general dehydration issues. If you want to replenish your system you need to enhance your body’s ability to uptake nutrients and minerals into your cells. This is one of the particular capacities of our Micro-BOOST™ product. The humic molecules in Micro-BOOST interact with the proteins in your cell walls, to increase the number of channels available for H20 and other nutrients to enter. The technical term for this is “increasing cell wall permeability”. To increase hydration during his ride Bob could have simply taken an extra ½ shot of Micro-BOOST before training.
Finally, the Insta-Lytes™ Spray is a killer tool for all endurance athletes. Imagine being able to give your body electrolytes and minerals, exactly where you need them most, at a moment’s notice. With Insta-Lytes, you can do just that. The misting spray absorbs directly through the skin in a few seconds, bringing a full spectrum of minerals right into your muscles.
We recently hosted an Aid Station at one of the Gravel Races that Bob had been training for. At the aid station we would spray the cyclists’ legs down when they stopped for a quick breather. One the way out, the racers were somewhat reluctant (including Bob), thinking it wouldn’t make much difference. On the way back, every racer, who had been sprayed earlier, wanted to be sprayed again and remarked on the difference they had felt.
A high-quality mineral supplement can make an extraordinary difference in both training and recovery. For Bob, BEAM Minerals allowed him to keep up with rigorous semi-pro cycling training.
Want to find out what BEAM Minerals can do for you? Start replenishing your mineral stores today and experience the difference for yourself. You’ll be amazed by how good you feel.