Have you started to exercise or changed your exercise routine? If so, you may have noticed that you feel some discomfort the first few weeks into your routine. It is not uncommon to feel aches. But if you do, here are some ways to alleviate them.
Before we get to the normal aches and pains of a workout we need to make one point clear. Have you heard the saying ‘No pain, no gain?’ That is not always the best advice. If you ever feel pain after a workout, something is wrong. Start by investigating the pain. It could be a cramp, strain or sprain. When an exercise movement causes pain, the first thing to do is to stop what you are doing.
Aches are another story and can be caused by muscle soreness. If you wake the next day and you are sore in the muscles that were used in your previous workout, the body is responding to being used in a new way. But, even so you don’t have to suffer through the aches.
Alleviating the Pain
Here are some ways that you can get past the pain. We will start by discussing the R.I.C.E. method.
* Rest: If you feel discomfort or pain in your muscles or joints during or when performing activities after your workout, give your body a rest. It could be that you are just new to the routines, but also overuse of a muscle can lead to a weakness. If you are weight training, leave at least 48 hours between each muscle group to allow for muscle repair. Poor form can also be a cause of strain.
* Ice: Using ice packs on an area of soreness or injury can provide short-term relief from pain. Try a fifteen-minute treatment. Then move your limb around and see how you feel. You can make your own ice packs using 1 part rubbing alcohol and 3 parts water. Mix together in a freezer Ziplock bag. Place in the freezer. It will get very cold but never freeze. Great to use whenever you have the need for an ice pack.
* Compression: This also alleviates some pain and can reduce swelling that is putting pressure on vital tissues in the area. For a sprain or strain, try using a compression bandage like an ACE to keep fluid from accumulating in the area from inflammation. Keep the bandage snug but not too tight to cut off the blood supply to the area.
* Elevation: Another way to reduce or eliminate swelling is to elevate the hurt area. If it is a limb, use pillows or a stool. Try to raise the injury or ache above the level of the heart for best results.
Other than R.I.C.E. there are other ways to help aches and pains.
* Sit in a bath of warm water. This can help with swelling and also take the pressure off of the area from the buoyancy.
* Massage: Loosening the muscles can stretch out any kinks that are leading to pain. It may take a deep tissue massage which can be slightly uncomfortable at first.
* Stretch: Gentle stretching can keep muscles supple when exercising. A good warm stretch can avoid some injuries. Try a warm up and a cool down after every exercise session.
These are just a few ways to bounce back from the aches and pains of exercise.
What do you do to help alleviate soreness or aches after a workout?