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Why Do My Legs Pulsate After Walking

by Kristin Beck
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Why Do My Legs Pulsate After Walking

Why Do My Legs Pulsate After Walking

“Do your legs ever feel like they’re going to seize up after a walk? If so, it’s not just you — many people experience the same symptoms from time-to-time. It might be because exercise, particularly in hot weather, can cause dehydration. When you sweat, you lose water as well as essential minerals such as sodium (salt) and potassium. Your body needs these elements to regulate fluid levels in cells, maintain blood pressure and contract muscles. Without them, your muscles will spasm, causing cramps or tightness. The good news is that this problem usually goes away within an hour or two if you drink plenty of water before and during your workout.
People who are extremely active may notice leg pulsations more often than others do. While these pulses could be caused by other factors, including nerve damage, muscle disease or circulatory problems, there are also times when people simply overheat while exercising. This causes their bodies to release excess heat through sweating, which then makes their skin swell and become painful. Swelling can make breathing difficult and even cut off circulation, which means less oxygen gets to the brain, heart and kidneys. In extreme cases, swelling can put too much stress on joints and ligaments, leading to sprains and strains.
If you want to avoid overheating, try breaking workouts into short intervals with frequent rest breaks. Try walking for five minutes and stretching for three, and repeat until you’ve finished your 30-minute session. You should cool down slowly afterward, resting at least 20 minutes before moving again. And don’t forget to take extra precautions if you work out indoors where temperatures rise quickly.
In addition, keep tabs on how hydrated you are throughout the day. To stay hydrated, start drinking about 16 ounces of water 10 minutes before every meal and snack. Drinking lots of water throughout the day keeps your digestive system running smoothly and helps prevent constipation. Also, remember to replace lost liquids with water; soda and fruit juices contain calories but little else. Drink 8 glasses a day instead of sugary drinks, which deplete your energy supply.
Keep reading to find out what happens when you get dehydrated.
Dehydration Symptoms
When you’re dehydrated, your body loses its ability to absorb enough nutrients and expel waste products effectively. As a result, your urine becomes weak and colorless. You may have dry mouth and lips, headache, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, irritability and irregular bowel movements. Dehydration can lead to serious health complications such as kidney failure, coma and death. That’s why it’s crucial to drink enough water.
Your body uses water to transport nutrients to all parts of your body and carries waste products out of your cells. Water also provides structure for cell membranes and allows proteins and enzymes to function properly. Keeping adequate amounts of water in your bloodstream also ensures that your blood flows freely to different parts of your body.
To ensure that you get enough water each day, make sure you drink eight glasses per day. One glass of plain tap water contains fewer than 100 milligrams of sodium, which is only half of the recommended daily intake. Instead, choose purified water, herbal teas, unsweetened cocoa, decaffeinated coffee and soups made with vegetables, beans and herbs. Avoid consuming alcohol, carbonated beverages and sodas, which contain high amounts of sugar and artificial sweeteners. These substances dehydrate you faster than anything else.
You can easily monitor whether you’re staying hydrated by keeping track of how much liquid you consume. For example, count the number of ounces you drink at meals and snacks, plus any leftover amount. Compare this total to your typical consumption per day and note any changes in weight. If necessary, consult a doctor to determine how much water you need based on your age, gender, height and activity level.
Now, let’s look at some ways to treat dehydration and learn why taking multivitamins doesn’t help.
Treating Dehydration
The most obvious way to treat dehydration is to drink more fluids. However, some conditions require medical attention. For instance, if you have diabetes or low blood pressure, you may need to check your blood glucose and blood pressure several times a day to make sure nothing has changed. But overall, mild dehydration can be treated at home.
Since dehydration affects how efficiently your organs perform, you’ll want to replenish fluids immediately. Even though you’re probably thirsty, wait at least 15 minutes after eating before drinking anything. Eating foods rich in carbohydrates increases the production of saliva, which can dilute stomach acid. Saliva also contains bicarbonate, which neutralizes gastric acids [Source: Mayo Clinic]. Therefore, you shouldn’t drink anything containing caffeine, alcohol or chocolate right after eating. Caffeine irritates the lining of the stomach, causing excessive secretion of gastric juice. Chocolate also releases chemicals that break down the mucus barrier in your stomach, allowing bacteria to multiply. Alcohol is especially harmful because it reduces the effectiveness of antacids, making indigestion worse.
When treating mild dehydration, experts recommend using natural remedies rather than commercial rehydration solutions. Although commercially prepared sports drinks are available, they typically contain sugar, salt and flavorings, none of which provide the benefits associated with naturally occurring salts. Plus, since some commercial drinks include ingredients that can aggravate diarrhea, it’s better to rely on homemade broths, tea and broth-based soups.
While you wait for your own fluids to return to normal, use ice packs to limit swelling and pain. Ice works best when applied directly to the affected area, although cold compresses wrapped around the entire limb are acceptable alternatives. Keep the area clean and covered, and apply a moist cloth to reduce irritation. Take aspirin or ibuprofen to control inflammation and relieve discomfort.
For more information on healthy habits and related topics, visit the next page.
Multivitamins aren’t designed to replace regular nutrition. They provide vitamins and minerals that supplement your diet. Multivitamin deficiencies occur rarely, however, unless you severely restrict your caloric intake or engage in strenuous physical activities without getting enough food and water.”

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