We all know that “next day” or “2 days later” feeling. The days after a grueling workout are often met by groans and muscle aches. And while a little bit of stiffness goes hand in hand with exercise, extremely stiff muscles can often hinder our training regimes. There’s no way around a little bit of muscle soreness but it doesn’t have to keep you on the couch, stuck at home. Here are 5 tips we recommend you do to keep your muscles feeling fresh and energised.
- Foam Rolling.
Self myofascial release, also known as foam rolling, is a technique used to give yourself a deep tissue massage and release muscle tightness. By rolling across the hard cylindrical shaped object, you can apply pressure to specific points on your body. Regular foam rolling works to break the knots, tension, and toxins that can lodge in the fascia after an intense workout.
FITstrong currently stocks some of the best high density foam rollers; please contact us today if you’d like to get your hands on one.
- Increase Protein
Protein is an essential nutrient needed in the body for the growth, maintenance and muscle repair. Eating or drinking protein after a workout is one of the best ways to help strengthen the muscle fibers that were broken during the workout. For optimal muscle recovery, we recommend eating 20 – 35 grams of protein 15 – 30 minutes after a workout.
- Epsom salt baths
Not only does soaking in a warm epsom salt bath help you relax mentally, but it also has some physical benefits too. The primary component of epsom salt is Magnesium, a mineral the the body needs for many functions including regulating muscle and nerve function. By putting epsom salts into your warm bath water, you are allowing your body to absorb the magnesium through the skin which will work to flush out lactic acid buildup in the muscles.
We recommend adding 1-2 cups of epsom salt into your bath before you soak it up for about 15-20 minutes.
While stretching after a workout has been the cause for many debates in the world of fitness, we recommend that everybody stretches after a workout session. Stretching is a great way to increase circulation and reduce your risk of soreness related to tight or stiff muscles.
“Before a workout, focus on dynamic stretches, as your muscles are not warm and you do not want to put large amounts of tension on cold muscles. After your session, we recommend stretching for up to 10 minutes. This is when you do your static stretches. Try and hold each stretch for around 25 seconds and repeat if necessary”. says Paul Lagerwey, Coach at FITstrong Gym, Cape Town.
- Sports Massage
There’s almost nothing as effective as good sports massage after vigorous exercise. Not only do they feel good but a deep tissue massage will help ease inflammation and improve blood flow – both of which work together to reduce muscle tightness. And fortunately for you, FITstrong offers one of the most effective sport massages available in Durbanville. For more information, contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org.