Even when you feel great mentally after a strong workout, your muscles may be sore. This soreness is inflammation of the fibers of your muscles. There are some easy ways to help ease the discomfort and consequently avoid further injury without spending any, or very little, money. If you feel you have an injury and not just normal muscle soreness, be sure to consult a doctor.
You might wonder if this makes any sense, after all you just got yourself into a rhythm of steady exercise. The body is the most effective healer but to accomplish this it needs time and space to mend. Doing so will give you added strength when you pick up your exercise routine again, creating better results.
• Ice and Heat
Using ice relieves swelling and inflammation, it also relieves the pain. When you first feel the soreness, ice for about 15-20 minutes, make it into a massage along the muscle if you feel inclined. After the first icing, wait. Give your body about 45-60 minutes. Your sign that icing will help will be warm skin. Continue until the inflammation lessens considerably, this will usually be about 2-3 days.
Now is the time for heat. Heat increases circulation along with relaxing the muscle. Apply for about 20 minutes a couple times a day as you desire.
Regularly stretch. The more you increase your flexibility, the less your muscles will be prone to soreness. Stretching does what it says, it elongates the muscles, releasing tension. Over time your range of motion will increase too. This gives your muscles the ability to sustain weight bearing activity with greater balance. Check out one of the many classes we offer for yoga in Littleton to help you increase your flexibility.
• Arnica Gel
This gel is made from the flowering heads of arnica. It is also made into creams and ointments solely for topical use. The power of arnica lies in one of its chemical components called helenalin which has anti-inflammatory properties. It can be found in most stores these days given its good reputation for relieving pain. Arnica should not be ingested.
When our muscles are sore or tight it might have been the exercise that triggered it, but the real cause could be a nutrition deficiency. If we are low on minerals or certain amino acids the muscles are unable to sustain exertion or complete protein synthesis both of which are important during weight bearing exercise. Consult your doctor to see if you might be deficient, ask in particular your magnesium and glutamine levels are. Magnesium aids the body in relaxing muscle tissue after it contracts. Glutamine is the amino acid that aids protein synthesis. While it is non-essential, it is helpful for relaxing the muscles of the body.
At Club USA in Littleton, Colorado you can always feel comfortable asking a trainer or staff member if you have concerns with your muscle soreness. In addition, our personal trainers can tailor a workout to fit your needs. Contact us to learn more.