Now that I am taking my health fitness more seriously, I feel a lot better. I am less tired and more active, which is always a good thing. At least, I am less tired and more active a couple of days after my workout! What I didn’t realise is how intense the aches and pain can be after a good session in the gym. Some days, they even stop me from getting up the stairs properly! Although I thought I was soft to begin with, I found out that everyone suffers from the Delayed Onset of Muscle Soreness (DOMS). So, I have researched some ways to combat DOMS and make the day after less painful.
As soon as I finish my workout, I like to hit the shower and wind down. Although I think that the training is over, it is not. Or, it shouldn’t be over because I should stretch straight immediately after. Stretching expands the muscles and stops them from contracting. When they contract, they shorten, and that is when the pains can intensify. It is simple, but it works!
Personally, I would never go as far as some people, though I do see why a cool down is important. Quite simply, it helps your body wind down after a long session of exercise. So, a basic five-minute jog, as well as a good stretch, can limit the painful sensations in the morning. Some people go one step further and have an ice bath. The cold water tightens your blood vessels and drains them of any lactic acid that can cause cramps. Or, you could just take a cold shower. It might not feel nice, but it is better than sitting in a bath full of freezing cold water!
Use Deep Heat
Heat is also an effective way of helping the muscles recover. Whereas intense cold causes the blood vessels to tighten, heat causes the muscles to relax. As a result, they come more flexible and less prone to contract. So, when you use your muscle groups again the day after, they can stretch further before they start to hurt. Heat is especially good for getting rid of pains that are related to the muscles, like frozen shoulder. Instead of asking how to get rid of frozen shoulder, rub your shoulder with a heat cream.
Have A Hot Bath
Again, another way to relax the muscles is to relax in the tub. This time, you cover your entire body with hot water. By covering every inch of your body, you leave no stone unturned. With creams and lotions, it is hard to hit every spot.
Muscles hurt after a workout because they have tiny tears that need repairing. To repair them, the body needs protein. But, quick sources of protein are hard to find because most sources of protein are in food that needs breaking down first. A protein shake, however, goes straight into your system and supplies the muscles with the fuel they need to fix the problem. My daughters have protein shakes almost every morning for breakfast.
If you try some of these ideas out, the morning after, you shouldn’t feel a thing!