We all like a good sweat session, and it's really beneficial for our mental and physical health. However, if you're feeling aches and pains on day two (or three), you should definitely start to prioritise your recovery. Recovery doesn’t have to be overly complicated or fancy!
Here are some super basic tips that our in-house Nutritionist recommends to help you with your DOMS 👇🏼
STRETCH IT OUT 🧘🏼♂️
To improve blood flow to your muscles and provide essential minerals and nutrients required for muscle repair and injury prevention, you should focus on light stretching every day. When you stretch, your muscles should feel tight but not agonisingly painful. Now, I'm not talking about bragging about your toe-touching skills, but who doesn't want to be able to touch their toes?
GENTLE MOVEMENT 👟
Constantly pushing your body without a proper break to rest and recover between workouts can result in increased inflammation, which can lead to swollen, stiff joints and prolonged soreness in the muscles. Make sure you are including time in your training plan each week for more restorative activities (things like yoga, pilates or walking). Remember to always pay attention to how your body feels! ✨
Magnesium helps to regulate neuromuscular signals, muscle contractions, and helps relieve aches, pains, and cramps. If you want to increase the amount of foods in your diet that are high in magnesium, consider adding dark chocolate, dark leafy greens, beans, seeds, and cashews. While you can take magnesium internally, one of the quickest ways to deliver the benefits is topically. Epsom salts are high in magnesium and are quickly absorbed via the skin. If you needed a reason to run a bath and do some TLC, this is it - you're very welcome!
***Disclaimer: If you’re considering supplementing with magnesium, be sure to consult with a health professional about the right form and dosage for you.
DRINK MORE COFFEE ☕️
I promise, I am NOT being biased here! According to a study published in the Journal of Strength Training and Conditioning, bodybuilders who drank one to two shots of coffee prior to their workout not only had increased endurance, but also reported less severe post-workout soreness when compared to those who did not. So, who wants a cup of coffee?
ZONE IN ON YOUR NUTRITION 🥗
We all know that nutrition and fitness go hand in hand, and while protein is important for a quick recovery, so is eating a well-balanced diet regardless of your fitness goals. A common rule of thumb is to consume 1.5 to 2 grams of protein per kg of body weight every day. We also want to shout out anti-inflammatory foods like blueberries, leafy greens, turmeric, green tea, and goji berries to help with recovery.
KEEP HYDRATED 💦
Always remember to hydrate first, then hydrate some more. We lose minerals including salt, potassium, and chloride as we sweat. Therefore, maintaining proper hydration is essential and your kidneys are going to thank you for being properly hydrated!
PRIORITISE YOUR SLEEP 😴
Our bodies use sleep to regenerate cells, repair tissue, and produce hormones (such as growth hormone). Getting enough high-quality ZZZ's may make a big difference in how quickly your body recovers, as well as how effectively your body can develop muscle.
MANUAL THERAPY ✨
Lactic acid tends to accumulate in our muscles during exercise, which increases tension. Foam rolling, cupping, or massage therapy can help break up lactic acid and ease discomfort by delivering oxygenated blood to your muscles and improving range of motion.
TAKE HOME MESSAGE
Always listen to your body and check in with how it is feeling. Remember, a day off training isn’t going to make you lose your gains or hinder your progress, if anything, it will be of great benefit.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brianna-lee is a qualified Nutritionist with a diverse and extensive portfolio career and qualifications in Nutrition, Psychology, Fitness/Pilates, and Business. She has spent the last ten years working in the Health and Wellness industry and alongside allied health professionals. Brianna-lee is passionate about health and integrating modalities to educate individuals on achieving optimal health and long-term wellness. She was also a recipient of ANTA National Bursary Award 2022 for her academic excellence.