Sore muscles are a common after effect of exercise. Don’t let that soreness sideline you. Use these tips to give yourself a little TLC and keep up with your exercise commitment.
Drink tart cherry juice
The National Institutes of Health reported in a research study that tart cherry juice can ease muscle soreness. NIH found that the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant rich juice may offer protection against muscle soreness and pain with exercise. How much do you need? In the days leading up to exercise, aim for 45 to 50 cherries or the juice of the same number of cherries daily.
One of the best ways to manage muscle soreness is with movement. Being still only makes the problem worse in most cases. Instead, try gentle movement such as walking, swimming or stretching to feel better.
Roll with it
Invest in a foam roller for myofascial release. Foam rollers are inexpensive and easy to use. It’s like giving yourself a deep tissue massage in the comfort of your own home. If you don’t have a foam roller handy, ask for help. Your workout buddy can double as a masseuse.
Soak it out
A warm bath is perfect for soothing sore muscles. Add in some Epsom salt to boost the healing power of your time in the tub.
Mend with medicine
Anti-inflammatories or NSAIDs like Aleve ease muscle soreness. This isn’t an everyday option but a good one to have when nothing else seems to work.
Hydrate and have a snack. Dehydration can cause pain, cramping and muscle spasms, so get plenty of water. Protein helps rebuild and repair muscles, so include some in your post workout meal or snack. Add carbs to rebuild energy stores so you’re ready for the next workout session.
Sleep gives your body time to heal and gain strength. In fact, without adequate sleep you are not likely to achieve significant fitness gains. Rest and recovery are as important as exercise and nutrition for your overall health and wellness.
Go hard when you need to, but don’t be afraid to go soft on sore muscles. Your recovery plan will add to your stamina and strength. Reduce the likelihood of injury and enjoy exercise more when you treat your muscles with a little TLC.