Working out is fun, rewarding and significantly beneficial for good health. However, the sore, achy muscles that might come after a hard workout session is not so fun.
Adequate rest is essential to repair torn muscle fibers, contributing to fitness gains, improved performance and decreased lingering aches and pains
Avoid excessive muscle soreness by including a warm-up and cool-down in workouts as well as progressively increasing the intensity and volume. If you do find yourself stiff and achy after a workout, follow the remedies below to get yourself back to normal in no time.
HOT OR COLD THERAPY
A hot bath can help relax lingering tired, achy muscles anytime while cold-water baths are best for very sore, inflamed muscles immediately after a hard workout session. Bonus points if you fill your bath with magnesium-rich Epsom salts to further relax contracted muscles. If you’re in a pinch, try simply alternating hot water with cold-water bursts while standing in the shower to improve circulation and decrease pain.
A good massage is not just a luxury, but also a significant therapy for relieving muscle soreness and decreasing stiffness. Massage helps to decrease inflammation in the body by relaxing tight areas, improving the circulation of oxygen and nutrients to sore muscles for faster recovery. If you can’t get to a masseuse, massage tight areas yourself with a massage cream and/or try using a foam roller or stick to work out kinks.
A gentle form of yoga that includes stretching poses and/or a light vinyasa flow can be therapeutic for tired, achy muscles. Yoga poses can stretch, relax and rejuvenate the body for increased flexibility and decreased muscle soreness. Try poses such as a seated forward bend for the hamstrings, cobbler’s pose for the hip adductors and pigeon pose for tight hip external rotators.
Sometimes, a good rest day may be just the right prescription for muscle soreness. Hard workouts, whether of high-intensity or prolonged duration, break down muscle fibers leading to fatigue, aches and pains. Adequate rest is essential to repair torn muscle fibers, contributing to fitness gains, improved performance and decreased lingering aches and pains. Schedule one to two rest days per week and easy recovery days of low-intensity in between hard sessions.
How about you? Have you tried any of the remedies above or do you have any of your own faithful tips? Share in the comments below!