While reducing soreness might be the immediate need, you should understand the importance of recovery.
Intense physical activity strains or tears muscle fibers, which is why they become sore a day or two after. Muscles grow and become stronger when they are subjected to forces that cause tiny tears in the muscle fibers. Intense physical activity strains or tears muscle fibers, which is why they become sore a day or two after. You can avoid, or at least minimize, muscle pain with proper body conditioning before undertaking such activities. It is during the recovery period after a workout that the body repairs these fibers and builds new blood vessels to the stressed area. But that's not all. During the recovery period, the energy-generating components of the cells develop a higher work capacity, and your bone density increases.
Although soreness cannot be completely eliminated, it can be controlled, and proper post-workout recovery protocols will also allow your body to recover more quickly and respond better to your workouts. Here are five tips to a healthy and speedy recovery:
#1 - Protein and Carbohydrates
Immediately after a workout, you have a maximum of about two hours to most efficiently absorb what you eat as energy and repair fuel, which will help repair the ripped muscles and tendons. Protein and carbohydrates, which are converted to energy, are essential in building muscle mass, so adding them to your diet immediately after a physical activity will hasten this process and help heal your muscles faster. If you do not eat, you may not have enough carbohydrate energy for your next workout, you will certainly not have the protein you need to repair muscles, and you will not have enough healthy fat for your hormones and joints.
#2 - Hydration
Your muscle cells need water, so when it comes to recovery, dehydration is one of your biggest enemies. Try to drink one 20-24oz bottle of water for each hour of exercise.
#3 - Easy Exercise
Performing a brief cool-down after a workout helps contracting muscles milk out excess soreness-generating fluids. In the same way, Just because you have muscle pain does not mean you should altogether stop exercising. In fact, it will help you to go on with your regular routine, but keep things light and easy in the meantime until you have fully recovered. Do easy exercises that use different muscles than those that have been inflamed, because it will counteract the stiffness while supporting those sore parts.
#4 - Blood Flow
Muscles become sore because as your body burned energy during the strenuous activity, there was likely a shortage in oxygen during the process converting glycogen (stored energy) into glucose. Your muscles eventually stiffen because of poor blood circulation. Techniques that can improve blood flow include cooling down after your workout with a walk or easy bike ride, wearing compression garments, performing light stretching during or after each workout, alternating every 30-60 seconds between hot and cold running water in your post-workout shower, taking an ice bath after a strenuous weight training workout or long run, and performing a light walk, swim, or easy exercise routine the day after a hard workout. Massaging the painful areas with slow, even strokes. Applying just enough pressure will help improve circulation and reduce the pain.
#5 - Topical Ointments, and Warm and Cold Compress
Most of these techniques work to reduce swelling and inflammation, and relieve pain. You apply cold compress in the sore area for 10 to 20 minutes. Do this every six hours for the next two or three days until the swelling subsides. Then, you can apply a hot compress also for 10 minutes. Heat serves to relax sore muscles and relieves pain.There are also several compounds that you can rub on a muscle to eliminate soreness and improve recovery. Most of these compounds work by creating a pain-relieving and cooling sensation, increasing blood flow, or displacing elevated levels of calcium. Popular remedies include Arnica rub, Traumeel, Ben-Gay, and Tiger Balm. All of these ointments can be rubbed into the muscle immediately after and up to several days after a workout, until soreness subsides.
Muscle pain develops after engaging in rigorous physical activity that your body is unaccustomed to. You usually get this following a new and more intensive exercise routine, or by overexerting yourself after a long period without regular physical activity. The degree of pain varies according to the kind and length of the activity done. But getting fit doesn't have to be painful. So if you find yourself sore, use the techniques in this article to recover properly and get fit quickly!