Say goodbye to training-induced sore muscles with these effective post-workout tips.
9 Effective Ways to Remedy Sore Muscles Post-Workout
1. Perform Less Intense Movements
Working out when sore is almost impossible. In fact, simple tasks such as taking a shower, brushing the teeth, and even going to the toilet are all a challenge when the body is sore.
Rather than lying down in bed and wallowing in pain, gym-goers should use their sore muscles. Performing less intense exercises is a solid way to relieve muscle soreness.
Compared to resting all day, gym-goers can achieve lasting sore muscle relief faster if they move around. That’s because performing light exercises promotes better blood circulation.
Try to engage parts that are actually sore. For example, a good way to get rid of soreness in the legs after doing squats is by brisk walking.
A few rounds around the block is exactly what the body needs to pump blood and oxygen into those tight muscle tissues.
2. Hydrate Properly
Want to know how to relieve sore muscles? It might be beneficial to understand what causes muscle soreness in the first place.
So, why do muscles get sore? While there are different factors that come into play, a very common reason is dehydration.
Substantial research shows the direct relation of dehydration and delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). Water helps flush out the toxins and waste products in the system that are responsible for sore muscles after workout sessions.
Also, hydrating isn’t limited to one’s post-workout routine. Fitness buffs should make sure to drink a substantial amount of water while working out to avoid fatigue.
Learning how to treat sore muscles might be the least of one’s concerns if dehydration causes them to feel lightheaded and faint during an exercise routine.
3. Perform Light Stretching Exercises
Apart from performing light dynamic exercises for sore muscles relief, doing some light stretching moves is also a solid way to soothe sore muscles.
Gym-goers can opt to perform a variety of static stretching exercises. There are hundreds of moves to choose from and there’s bound to be one for everybody.
This routine doesn’t have to consist of advanced yoga poses. Simple stretching and breathing exercises should do the trick.
To start, try stretching muscle groups that are in pain. Be careful not to overstretch them or it might lead to further complications.
Hold each stretch for a few counts before releasing and remember to breathe properly.
Tip: While static stretching might be a good way to get rid of sore muscles, they’re not an effective pre-workout routine. A solid method of reducing muscle soreness are some dynamic stretching exercises before working out.
Dynamic exercises include high knees, jumping jacks, brisk walking, and box jumps, among others. These exercises effectively warm the muscles up to prevent injuries, cramps, and of course, soreness.
4. Eat Enough Protein
Protein plays a key role in repairing muscle tissues fast. If a gym-goer eats enough protein, they might be able to prevent getting sore after workout sessions.
Perhaps one of the most important times of the day to consume protein is during the anabolic window. That’s why it’s ideal to have a protein shake or snack right after a training session.
Anabolic Window Definition: The anabolic window is the 30-minute window where the body switches from a catabolic state to an anabolic one. The body needs to consume sufficient amounts of protein, healthy fats, and carbs during this period to speed up recovery.
Of course, it’s equally important to get enough protein throughout the day. Ideally, a person should consume a gram of protein per pound of body weight.
Fitness buffs should start incorporating protein-packed foods such as soybeans, Greek yogurt, chicken breast, and eggs into their diet. A protein-infused diet plan will lead to quicker muscle recovery periods.
5. Take an Ice Bath
A person gets sore muscles if they engage in an intense physical activity outside of their usual routine. That means even seasoned athletes can get muscle soreness if they perform extremely rigorous activities.
With that in mind, a solid way to relieve sore muscles after workout sessions is to take an ice bath. It’s what professional athletes do after a tiring game to minimize the DOMS.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that fitness buffs should take one every single time they work out. While it may be effective, it’s not very practical to do so.
Instead, only take ice baths after extremely intense sessions. For example, gym-goers who have just finished an out-of-this-world CrossFit routine can try going for an ice bath.
Meanwhile, fitness enthusiasts who did a little light jogging can try simpler ways to get rid of muscle soreness.
6. Use Heat Packs
— ThermoDr (@heat_packs) February 18, 2017
Ice baths are a great way to prevent sore muscles. But they don’t do much to relieve soreness once it begins.
On the other hand, heat packs are effective tools fitness buffs can use to relieve muscle soreness later on in the day.
The concept behind this is that heat packs help stimulate blood flow, just like exercising and stretching does. What makes it different is that using heat packs require very minimum effort.
Simply fill a heat pack with warm water then place it on the sore body part. Fitness buffs can do this later on in the day when the soreness starts to surface.
7. Eat Anti-Inflammatory Foods
Gym-goers should understand soreness is basically inflammation. To prevent this from occurring, a healthy diet of anti-inflammatory foods might help.
These include foods such as tomatoes, spinach, kale, blueberries, oranges, salmon, tuna, almonds, and walnuts. Try to stick to low-calorie, all-natural foods that won’t add to the total body fat percentage.
Tip: To ensure they’re getting the right nutrients, fitness buffs can prepare their meals days ahead of time. Create a healthy meal prep plan and cook those meals over the weekend.
That way, gym-goers won’t have a choice but to eat healthily. Store the meals in single-serve containers and place them in the refrigerator and reheat them before eating.
8. Massage the Sore Muscles
Massaging tight body parts is a quick way to help sore muscles. Fitness buffs don’t have to be great at it, they just have to know which muscles to press.
Of course, gym-goers can always opt to have a specialist who knows how to heal sore muscles do it for them. Tell the specialist which body parts are in pain and they’ll know how to go about it.
9. Wait for Muscle Soreness to Go Away
Finally, the last way to get rid of muscle soreness is to let time do its thing. In some cases, gym-goers might benefit more if they simply went about their day as they normally would.
Frantically searching what to do for sore muscles might only add to one’s stress. Relax, eat healthy, stretch often, and remember to take it easy.
Check out this video about tips to relieve sore muscles from PictureFit:
These are just some of the ways to remedy sore muscles after a workout. Of course, apart from these post-workout tips, fitness buffs should also take care not to strain their body too much while exercising.
Exercising with the wrong form and without a proper warm-up routine are the most common causes of muscle soreness. Nonetheless, sore muscles are usually not serious and shouldn’t cause too much worry.
Have you tried any of these tips to ease sore muscles after a workout? Share your experience with us in the comments section below!