Feel Good: 5 Ways To Relieve Post-Workout Aches
By Revathie Dhanabalan
August 31, 2017
Have you ever felt muscle soreness long after you've chiong-ed at the gym or run? What you're experiencing is Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). With DOMS, just putting on a shirt or doing normal everyday activities will have you wincing at the soreness and stiffness. The good news is, there are ways to help relieve post-workout aches for faster recovery and in this series of FEEL GOOD, we give you our top 5 tips.
So, what exactly causes DOMS? Excessive eccentric contraction
causes muscle damage and inflammation that triggers pain receptors. Excessive eccentric contraction refers to movements that require the body to release load, like when you’re running downhill. However, DOMS isn’t exactly a bad thing. It just means that you overloaded the muscles and you have to figure out ways to work through your aches.
Tip 1: Take a Break
Once you start feeling the ache, take a break! You shouldn't go hard the next day or day after. Let the muscle damage in your body heal. But if you feel the need to keep moving or your aches aren't as bad - try walking instead of running or maybe choose lighter weights for your bicep curls, with fewer reps.
Tip 2: Stay Limber
Do some slow holding stretches while you're recovering. Gentle stretching helps to increase blood flow to affected areas but remember to only push yourself as far as your body allows. Try out light foam rolling or an easy yoga class to get you started.
Tip 3: Drink Chocolate Milk
Looking for a convenient post-workout snack? Have some delicious chocolate milk to get more protein into your diet. The protein will kick start muscle recovery. Studies have also shown that it helps to decrease the amount of time it takes the body to recover.
Tip 4: Warm Bath
A warm bath helps to improve blood circulation, which means nutrient rich-blood reaches your aching muscles, aiding in muscle recovery. You will feel refreshed and also sleep better after a bath.
Tip 5: Hot/Cold Treatment
Alternating between hot and cold treatment is highly effective in promoting blood circulation and muscle recuperation. Apply an ice pack for 15 minutes followed by a heat pack for another 15 minutes. Repeat!
Even after you've tried all these tips and you still find that nothing works, try seeking professional help from a massage therapist or you can try out these common pain relief methods for injuries.
Good luck and rest well!