Following a workout, some muscle soreness is normal. Unfortunately, that can interfere with the rest of your goals for the day. Not only that, speeding up muscle recovery after a workout can put you in a better position to engage fully with your next workout – and kill it in and out of the gym.
Are you looking for ways to speed up your body repair? Several strategies can help.
What is Muscle Recovery?
After intense or prolonged exercise, your muscles need time to recover. Exercise puts them under stress and causes small tears in the muscle fibers. During your recovery period, these fibers have a chance to rebuild and adapt to the new demands you’re making of them. The repair process is essential for increasing your overall strength, speed, and endurance.
Why Do Muscles Need Recovery?
First and foremost, if you do not allow adequate muscle repair after a workout, you may put yourself at a higher risk for injury. A lack of adequate time for this can also slow your progress and prevent you from seeing the gains you really want from your exercise routine. In fact, many people find that scheduling adequate time for this can make a huge difference in their exercise progress.
How to Speed Up the Muscle Recovery Process
Even if you recognize the benefits of this process, you may want to progress through that as quickly as you can, allowing you to get back to training – or to be ready for the big event you’ve had in your sights. Incorporate some of the best strategies to help your body maintain its overall strength.
1. Get Adequate Sleep
Sleep is critical for any human body. During deep sleep, your body has greater capacity to repair itself, which can enhance the overall body building process. If you’re struggling to recover after a workout or feel that you aren’t making the progress you’d hoped for, consider shifting your sleep schedule so that you have adequate time to get a good night’s rest.
If you are dehydrated, you may find that it slows your recoup substantially. Many people do not get adequate water throughout the day, especially after an intense workout. If you’re used to ignoring your body’s signals, you may not even notice that you’re thirsty. Get in the habit of hydrating well before, during, and after your workouts. Adequate hydration can help your body push out toxins and get needed nutrients to the body so that it can rebuild effectively.
3. Check Your Nutrition
If you’re participating in regular, intensive exercise sessions, it’s important to make sure that you’re getting the right nutrition. Avoid excess sugars and simple carbohydrates. Instead, make sure your body has the tools it needs for regaining by making sure that you get enough protein and eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, which contain the variety of nutrients your body really needs.
When considering your nutrition, make sure that you’re getting enough calories to fuel your body. Many people exercise in an effort to lose weight. While you can certainly lose weight with exercise, you may find that rigid dieting restricts your body too far and makes it more difficult for you to recover after a workout. Consult with a nutritionist if you have questions about the right calorie consumption levels for your activity level and body size.
4. Get a Massage
Massage can go a long way toward improving muscle tension. Massage can, in some people, reduce lactic acid buildup, which may help alleviate immediate soreness. Massage also helps increase blood flow and oxygen to your muscles, which may improve overall repair after a workout and make it easier for your body to rebuild.
The good news is, you don’t have to rely on a partner (or spend a fortune with a massage therapist) to get a good massage. Check out the CloudMassage Shiatsu foot and leg massager or check out the other available tools to learn more about the massage options you may have.
Stretching is an important part of the body-building process – and it’s one that all too many people overlook. Your stretching routine may be extensive, especially if you’re trying to build flexibility, or it can be just a few minutes at the end of your workout. It’s also important to incorporate stretching as a regular part of your day, even after your workout. Adequate stretching can help improve blood flow to your muscles and alleviate ongoing soreness as well as help you maintain flexibility.
6. Get Moving
The day after a hard workout, it’s often tempting to lounge around during your free time. If you’re struggling with soreness, however, it may be helpful to get up and get moving. A light aerobic workout – or even simply taking a walk around the block! – can help with vital blood flow to your recovering muscles and help you recover more quickly.
Keep in mind that active recovery should not be excessively strenuous or put more stress on the muscles that need time to recover. The point of this is to give your body time to rest and rebuild–and it’s important to keep that in mind as you decide what you’re going to do with your day off.
Muscle recovery is an important part of your workout schedule and routine. Not only does this period help decrease soreness, but it can also help you rebuild the strength you need during your workout.