Within days of discovering I was pregnant with Manchild 1, Micah was kind enough to purchase a large jar of pickles for me. As a congratulatory gift and show of unconditional support. It was much appreciated and I polished them off in no time, but I must admit that it took care of my briny cravings for . . . a long, long time. However, I have it on good authority that pickles and pregnancy do generally go hand in hand. In fact, I am personally and quite closely acquainted with someone who, while pregnant, has been known to drink pickle juice straight from the jar. While in the past I would be tempted to say, “That’s such a pregnant-lady thing,” and leave it at that, I may have to revise my statement to something like, “That’s such a pregnant-lady/athlete/muscle-cramp-sufferer thing.”
Because, as it turns out, pickle juice may do more than satisfy the needs of a growing mama and her fetus. At least if this study done at Brigham Young University can be believed. (Let us pause for a brief shout out to my alma mater: Go Cougs!) Pickle juice can, apparently, help calm muscle cramps brought on by exercise. Yeah, I know. Wouldn’t that have been great to know at mile 18 of my first marathon? It totally would have been worth carrying around a little bottle of pickle juice to not have to stop and stretch my cramping legs. Or maybe I should have gone one step further and packed some straight vinegar? Okay, so maybe a stretch-break is worth it.
But now I have to wonder: if pickle juice helps with leg cramps brought on by exercise, could it do the same for cramps brought on by pregnancy? I’m pretty sure one of my all-time hated side effects of pregnancy are the cramps that occasionally wake me up in the night. Should I sleep with a glass of pickle juice on the night table next time I’m pregnant so I don’t have to clumsily fall out of bed for a quick stretch? I’m not sure how Micah would feel about that. On the one hand, a quick sip of pickle juice and maybe I would have to crawl over him in the middle of the night. On the other hand, waking up to a wife with pickle juice breath and morning breath?Maybe the stretching is worth it.