If you have completed a vigorous workout, you might experience muscle pain for 24 to 48 hours after exercising. This can be highly inconvenient and could stop you from wanting to exercise in the future. Fortunately, there are a number of very effective ways that you can ease the pain you feel after exercising.
Using Heat And Cold
A tried and tested method of dealing with pain after exercise is the application of heat or cold. What you need to use will vary depending on the pain you have. There are also certain times when you should look at using both heat and cold to treat the pain you feel.
After exercising, if you notice that there is some swelling around the muscle or the area feels warm to the touch, you need to use ice. You should wrap an ice pack in a thin towel and apply it to the sore area. You should keep the cold on the area for around 15 minutes. This will reduce any swelling that you have and will cool down the muscles.
If you do not have any swelling or heat, you should apply a heat pack to the sore muscles. This will improve the blood circulation which will help to ease the pain. The heat pack should only be applied for 15 minutes at a time.
If your muscles are feeling very stiff after exercising, you might need to apply both ice and heat. You should generally apply the ice first to stop any swelling and then the heat pack. However, you will need to be careful and allow a bit of time between the ice and heat packs. A natural patch is another option as well.
Go For A Massage
A massage is one of the most effective ways of relieving pain after exercise and is one of the most relaxing. Sport massages and trigger-point massages are recommended because they will focus on the muscles that you are having problems with. The massage will help to loosen muscles which have tightened during the exercise and will soothe the aches that you feel.
Ideally, you should have the massage as soon as possible after you finish exercising. If you are a gym member, there are some gyms that have massage on offer and you should take advantage of this. If you cannot get a massage as soon as you stop exercising, you should try to have one as soon as you can. The longer you wait, the more painful the massage is going to be as your muscles will be tighter and have started to cool down.
Do Not Forget To Stretch
One of the best ways to prevent pain in the first place is to take the time to stretch after exercise. This is particularly important if you are going to be doing rigorous exercise which really works your muscles. Stretching will help to loosen any tight muscles and give them a chance to slowly cool down.
If your muscles cool down too quickly, they will start to tighten, and this will cause pain. However, you should not only stretch after your workout to avoid after exercise pain. Stretching before you start exercising will help to warm up the muscles and loosen them. This will get them ready for more vigorous exercise and will reduce the chances of an injury.
Do Some Light Exercise
When you are suffering from after exercise pain, the last thing you generally want to do is more exercise. However, this is one of the best ways to get over the pain that you feel. Of course, you should not jump into another intense workout because that would cause more harm than good.
What you should look at doing is some light exercise like walking or swimming. Low-impact exercise will help to warm the muscles and will help you relieve the pain you feel. When you complete light exercise, you will be speeding up the elimination of lactic acid buildups which cause the pain in your muscles.
It is important to note that you will not feel relief instantly when you start your light exercise. You might feel an increase in the pain when you start, but as the muscles move more the lactic acid will start to break down and you will feel some relief.
Build Up Your Eccentric Exercises
There are certain types of exercise that are more likely to result in muscle pain than others. Eccentric exercises are one of them and this is why you need to build up to them and slowly increase their intensity. Eccentric exercises are ones where your muscles will lengthen under pressure.
One of the most common eccentric exercises that cause pain is the bicep curl. The downward motion of the bicep curl will cause an eccentric contraction in the muscle and this increases the chances of pain. Running downhill will also cause these contractions. To avoid the pain that comes with these exercises, you need to slowly increase the intensity of these workouts.
This will give your muscles the chance to become used to these eccentric contractions. When this happens, the chance of pain and injury will decrease, and this is what you want. It is also one of the reasons why experts recommend starts with small numbers of reps which weight training.
Take A Warm Bath
A warm bath will only provide you with temporary relief from the pain that you feel. The heat will help with circulation and will ease the pain in the same way that a heat pack does. The benefit of the warm bath is that you are able to apply heat to a larger area of the body such as the entire back.
There are some people who add herbs and essential oils to their warm bath to help with pain. This is something that you might consider doing, but you do need to be careful. There are some essential oils which cause bad reactions in people with certain conditions. Additionally, if you are on medication you will need to talk to your doctor before you start using essential oils.