Do you experience aches and pains after a vigorous workout session? A lot of people think that muscle soreness is a sign that you just had a fantastic workout. However, that is not the case at all. You should never use sore muscles as a barometer for the quality of your workout, because these two things do not go hand in hand.
Usually, if you feel all sore after working out, it means that you worked and pushed yourself really hard, performed your exercises in bad form, or did very difficult routines that were beyond your current physical fitness level.
On your next trip to the gym, to avoid post-workout soreness, aching, and discomforts, give the steps enumerated below a try:
Many fitness experts say that stretching is a good technique to carry out after working out to prevent sore muscles. According to them, after workout, your muscles tend to contract and shorten. And, through stretching, you can lengthen them to improve their mobility and be able to recover faster. Examples of recommended post-workout stretches are:
Hamstrings and calves stretch
To do this, you should sit on the floor, and do the Indian style sit. Then, extend your right leg out straight in front of you, and try to reach its toes using your right hand. Stay in this position for about 30 seconds. Repeat all steps with your left leg extended out.
To do this, stand straight with your feet about shoulder width apart and your arms hanging on your sides. Bring both of your hands behind you and interlock your fingers. Slowly and carefully pull your interlocked hands as far back behind your body as possible. This movement causes your chest to open up. Remain in that position for about 20 to 30 seconds.
To do this, lay on your stomach on the floor. Try to raise your chest by placing your arms on either side of your chest, like in a push-up position. Once the both of your arms are fully extended and your chest is at the highest point off the ground, hold for 30 seconds.
Hip flexors stretch
To do this, get into a kneeling position on the floor. Raise your right leg and place your right foot forward to get into a lunge position. Make sure that your right foot is further forward than your right knee. If not, make adjustments by taking a bigger step forward. Repeat the steps with your left leg.
Subjecting your muscles to physically demanding activities causes tiny tears and inflammation in the muscle fibers. To relieve these, you should massage the sore spots. Through massaging, your body produces more mitochondria in the muscles, boosts your muscles’ oxygen levels, and helps get rid of toxins that have accumulated.
To soothe your muscles, you can perform the massage yourself by making good use of your palms, knuckles, and thumbs. As long as the sore spot is somewhere you can reach, you can easily work into your affected muscle tissues deeply and release the tension in there. You can also use a tennis ball or a lacrosse ball to better loosen the knots that your hands may not be able to undo.
Or, you can go visit a massage spa or wellness center to avail of different massage techniques that can release your cramped muscles and give you complete relaxation. You can try getting any of the following:
This massage technique is a popular choice for people looking to eliminate muscle cramps, pains, and tension.
Trigger point massage
This massage technique is known for its deeper and more intense work into the affected muscles. It aims to pinpoint the problem spot, or trigger point, to be able to efficiently relieve the pains and aches it causes.
Deep tissue massage
This massage technique goes very deep into the muscles and even the bones to release tight knots in the muscles and scar tissue. It is often used to treat upper back pains and chronic neck pains.
After your workout, you should not delay fueling your body with nutritious foods that can speed up your recovery. You do not want to walk hobbled or be wincing in pain at the slightest movement you make for many days, do you? For the good of your body, make sure to include the foods below that health experts suggest as excellent post-workout eats:
This food is high in casein and whey, which are types of protein that can rejuvenate sore muscles fast after a workout. In addition, it is loaded with good bacteria that can help in breaking down and absorbing essential nutrients for better physical strength and stamina.
Nuts and seeds
These foods contain high levels of omega-3 fatty acids, which are capable of fighting off inflammation and are quite useful in muscle growth and synthesis. Because they also have electrolytes and zinc, they can keep your hydrated and have a strong immune system too. With their excellent fiber and protein contents, they can contribute to effective weight loss as well.
This food is considered by health experts as a superfood because of its impressive antioxidant content that is very powerful against cancer, heart disease, and other health threats. Because of its high magnesium levels, it is also valuable in maintaining healthy nerve and muscle functions, and normal blood pressure and blood glucose levels.
Ice has the ability to relieve muscle soreness after an intense workout. It is used by athletes, both professional and amateur, to stop the pains and aches from lingering. If your entire body is sore, you can prepare an ice bath in a tub where you can soak and soothe tired and weary muscles. You can also enjoy an ice-cold shower and avail of relaxed muscles afterwards. If you only want a specific body part iced, you can get an ice pack and apply it on the affected spots.