I know working out hurts like hell especially if you’ve just begun. We have all been through those abs and leg days that take forever to heal and make even the slightest of tasks impossible and the worst part is there is no escaping it either but there are a few things you can do to ease the pain and speed up the recovery process. It’s time to fight back and here are 5 golden rules of recovery to get you kicking the next day too.
Get ready for the fight
Getting ready for your day at the gym isn’t just about a couple of stretches. While they are great they aren’t the solution to those annoying aches. The ideal way to prep is through low intensity exercises like a slow run, 2-3 bodyweight moves like push-ups etc.
If your plan is to lift heavy today then you should prep by doing the same exercises with lighter weights. This will get the blood pumping and prepare you both physically and mentally for the heavy load.
Cool it off
Ever wondered why sports persons use ice packs over cramps and muscle injuries? That’s because ice compresses the blood vessels thus in turn lowering the swelling and pain. According to studies a 5-10 minute dip into a cold water tub after an intense training session can lower soreness and fasten recovery.
Most gyms offer an ice water dip but your home tub will do equally great. Also don’t expect it to be fun but bearing through it can get you great results.
Get the liquids in
Dehydration is serious and an hour long cardio session on the cycle or the treadmill without proper refueling is enough to cause it. That’s the reason you find so many people carrying their shakers around while working out.
Watch out for symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, and dizziness. In the long run it also slows down recovery. Sip water between each workout and post workout grab a sports drink or your protein shake to refuel and recover faster.
Time for a massage
Ever wanted a good reason to get a rubdown? Well now you’ve got one. According to research a good rubdown post workout can lower DOMS by 25-30%. It also improves blood circulation, lowers inflammation and stiffness caused often due to over-training.
If that’s out of budget the next best thing you can do is self-myofascial release (SMR). Here you use an object like a foam roller and gently roll it over a targeted muscle groups. Do it 10-15 minutes prior to your workout. Here’s how you can do it.
Yes it hurts but being a couch potato isn’t the solution either. You don’t have to run 10 miles but light movements such as climbing stairs, yoga, a light walk or even a 20-25 minute ride after an intense session at the gym lowers the effects of DOMS and helps get rid of lactate in the muscles. Even blood circulation improves which in turn reduces stiffness too.