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Don't let Muscle Soreness Sidetrack your Fitness Goal

By Donna Kostiew

You were excited, weren’t you? The new fitness class that you have been considering for weeks finally called to you and, barely containing your excitement, you eagerly signed up for it. The images of you totally rocking it in class and then after a few weeks, the new body to show for it, have been dancing in your mind for weeks. And then reality hits. The first class comes and goes, and completely demolishes your body in the process. You can barely raise your arms to get dressed in the morning. And your legs? Well, let’s just say you won’t be back to walking normally for a couple of days. We’ve all been there, athletes of all fitness levels. We’ve all walked around with the smell of that certain muscle cream on us, or at least we wish we had some to put on.

Getting Rid of Muscles Soreness

Muscle aches and pains are the worst, but fortunately, there are some easy solutions available to you at home. Take a look at the following suggestions and get back to doing the things you love.

  • Proper nutrition – It’s easy to substitute high-quality nutrition with something portable and ready to go. Drinking a protein shake or eating a nutrition bar right after a workout is good, but ideally, it should never substitute an actual meal. Eating a balanced meal within two hours of your workout is what you should shoot for with a goal of making sure it is as nutrient-dense as possible.
  • Active recovery – This is the opposite of going home and resting immediately after a tough workout. Moving around is actually better for the body to reduce muscle soreness. Any form of light activity will do, you just want to keep moving because it helps to break up the lactic acid buildup in the muscle fibers.
  • Epsom salt baths - Relaxing your body in a warm Epsom salt bath for 30 minutes will help to ease some of the muscle soreness and is an amazingly easy way to flush toxins out of your muscles and decrease muscle inflammation.
  • Stretching - Stretching should always be done before and after a hard workout because it helps with reducing muscle soreness by increasing the blood flow to the areas that are being stretched. Always remember to stretch gently, hold the poses, and avoid any “bouncing.”
  • Massage - Massages aid in muscle relaxation, pain reduction, and stress relief. Deep tissue massage after exercise has also been shown to increase blood flow to the muscles and to speed up the removal of inflammatory agents.

Knowing the Difference

It is extremely important to know the difference between muscle soreness and an injury that may be more serious. You know your body better than anyone, so be sure to always listen to it and seek professional help if you feel it is needed.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in San Marcos, Calif.

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