*This is a collaborative post.
Muscle soreness is a phenomenon that is usually experienced a few hours after exercising, regardless of your workout intensity. This happens due to the extra work your muscles are required to put in whenever you exercise. Physicians believe that the hard work of your muscles may cause damage to your muscle fibres, causing soreness or tension. However, this should not deter you from your journey to having a healthier lifestyle. There are several practical ways to relieve your body of muscle soreness after exercise, and below are a few.
When you experience sore muscles after your workout, you would want to take a break from your regular workout routine. However, this is not an excuse to stop exercising entirely. After an intense workout session, you can do a few yoga poses to reduce your muscle tension. You can also do short-distance cycling, go on a light jog, or take a stroll. These light exercises help you use your muscles with less intensity and also allow you to reduce your chances of experiencing lactic acid buildup in your muscles. Besides bringing relief to your muscles, doing light exercises also prevents blood from pooling in extremities (which may cause dizziness) by getting your heart rate back to the average rate after you exercise.
Stretching is a vital pre and post-workout activity you should incorporate into your daily exercise routine. Pre-workout stretch sessions help warm up the body for the rigorous exercise it is about to experience. On the other hand, a 10-minute post-workout stretching session would prevent sore muscles. Stretching while your body is still warm after working out would promote muscle flexibility, improve posture, and enhance muscle relaxation. Therefore before or after your workout session, do simple movements such as stretching your legs, swinging and stretching your arms, and marching on the spot. By stretching, you increase blood flow to your muscles, which effectively relieves your sore muscles.
One form of muscle soreness you may experience is acute muscle soreness- also known as immediate muscle soreness. This form of muscle soreness is experienced as soon as you are done with your workout sessions, compared to delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), which takes some time to experience. If you are experiencing acute muscle soreness, you should place an ice pack on the affected area to relieve the soreness and boost blood circulation. Simply place an ice pack in a towel and put it on the affected area for 15 minutes. You can also choose to take a cold shower to enhance muscle relaxation and boosts the healing process.
Just as an ice pack or a cold water shower can ease your muscle soreness, so can applying some heat. A warm bath can cause temporal relief by loosening the tightened muscles causing soreness and boosting blood circulation immediately after your workout. If you are experiencing DOMS, then it means the pain in your muscles may have come up between 24-48 hours after working out. In that case, you should consider placing a hot towel over the sore area. However, you should do so carefully to avoid getting burned and causing further injuries.
Exercise is great and all but not when you have a sore muscle. It is perfectly fine to take a break from your workout routine once in a while. During your workouts, your body is going through a vigorous and stressful session. Therefore, you need to give your body time to rest and recover lost energy. When you experience muscle soreness, take a break to get a massage to soothe out tight and sore muscles. It also relaxes the muscles and increases the range of motion in your joints.
You can also eat more anti-inflammatory foods such as watermelon, pineapple, and meals or beverages containing reasonable amounts of ginger. These foods are rich in antioxidants- meaning they are an excellent source for relieving muscle soreness. You should also invest in the best kt tape for all applications and other compression garments to provide relief for sore and tight muscles and joints before your next workout routine.
Hydration plays a vital role in any workout session- both before and after. After working out, you would need to replenish the fluids that have been lost. Drinking water, coconut water, low-sugar energy drinks, or green tea can help replenish the body. By rehydrating your body, you also lose tension in the joints, therefore relieving muscle soreness and eliminating other muscle cramps and dizziness issues.