After years of procrastinating, you finally joined a gym recently. Thus far, you’ve enjoyed the whole exercise experience. While you’re already noticing positive results, you do have one concern. After some of your workouts, you’ve been forced to deal with aggravating muscle soreness. If you can relate to this common fitness problem, consider adhering to the following 6 tips.
Complete Some Cool Down Exercises
The circulation of blood in and out of overworked muscles speeds up recovery time. You can achieve this important task by always performing cool down exercises after completing a strenuous workout. Your cool down should consist of 5 to 10 minutes of light aerobic exercise. For instance, you might want to:
- Take a walk
- Do jumping jacks
- Jog in place
- Go for a bike ride
Do Some Post Workout Stretches
Besides cool down exercises, stretching is another great way to improve the blood flow in and out of your muscles. After the cool down, be sure to stretch all of the muscle groups affected during your gym session. Never overstretch. If you’ve stretched to the point of pain, you’ve gone too far. While holding a stretch for 15 to 30 seconds is great, it isn’t necessary. As long as you go through a full range of motion with your stretches, your muscles will benefit from them.
Eat a Healthy Post Workout Snack
After working out at the gym, you need to strive to eat something within 2 hours. Getting the proper post workout nutrition is essential to stimulating muscle repair. In addition to preventing muscle soreness, consuming a small post workout meal will provide your hormones and joints with the healthy fat they need to thrive. Examples of appropriate snacks to eat after leaving the gym include:
- Half of a turkey sandwich on whole grain bread
- Half of a tuna sandwich on whole grain bread
- A bowl of brown rice with a serving of grilled chicken
- A protein smoothie with an apple
- Plain Greek yogurt with fresh berries
- A whole grain pita with hummus
- Cheese and apple slices
One of the most prevalent culprits of exercise related muscle soreness is dehydration. Your muscles require water in order to recover properly. As a general rule, you should drink 24 ounces of water for each hour of exercise you complete.
Compress Your Muscles
Compressing your muscles after completing a strenuous exercise routine at the gym helps to remove inflammation causing fluids from them. This activity can also eliminate tight areas and adhesions from your exhausted muscles. Getting a massage and exercising on a foam roller are excellent ways to compress your muscles.
Indulge in a Warm Bath
Can you remember the last time you soaked for an hour in a warm, inviting tub? If you always take quick showers, consider slowing down for a bit to enjoy a warm bath. Your tight, sore muscles will relax. Best of all, you’ll probably sleep better than you have in a long time. Therefore, you’ll feel more like attacking your hectic work day.
Regardless of whether you’re new to exercise or have been working out for years, you likely experience bouts of muscle soreness from time to time. Thankfully, many people find relief by adhering to one or more of the aforementioned 6 tips. So, don’t allow a little muscle tightness to derail your fitness plans. A little muscle pain now will likely result in significant fitness gains later.