When it comes to things you should do to keep your body healthy and strong, working out is one of the things at the top of the list. That doesn’t mean it’s a comfortable thing to do. Pushing yourself during a workout will leave you with some sore muscles. So what can you do to heal them?
Take a Hot Shower or Bath
Heat therapy can be great for alleviating muscle soreness. The idea is that heat helps open up blood vessels. That allows blood to transport oxygen and nutrients to muscle cells, which is essential for healing.
Taking a hot shower or bath for 15-20 minutes can be a great way to apply some heat therapy to your sore muscles. Elevate your muscle-recovery experience by combining your hot shower or bath with self-massage, bath salts, or essential oils.
Your body needs nutrients to recover from a workout. The best way to get those nutrients is through eating a nutritious, well-balanced diet with a good balance of macronutrients, especially protein. Eating protein is essential for repairing your muscles after workouts. Fats help with oxygen transport, which helps reduce lactic acid buildup.
Unrefined complex carbohydrates have plenty of fiber, vitamins, and minerals, which help replace the nutrients you lose when you work out. Remember to drink plenty of water too. You should drink about 1.5 times the water you lost over 2-6 hours post-workout.
Moving may be the last thing you want to do when your muscles are sore from working out, but it’s highly beneficial. The key is to keep the movement gentle. You don’t want to follow up with another intense workout that uses those same muscles. Go for a nice, easy walk, practice restorative yoga, go for a swim, or take a chill ride on your bicycle. The idea is to get your muscles moving and the blood flowing to help them relax and recover, not to do further stress or damage to the muscle fibers. Using a foam roller can also help manipulate muscle tissue, massaging it and helping you loosen up the muscles.
Post-workout soreness can range from mild discomfort to severe pain, depending on how hard you pushed your muscles and your fitness level. Sore muscles can recover on their own after two to three days. In the meantime, take steps to decrease your discomfort and help them heal. You’ll be glad you did.
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