Feeling sore after a thorough training session is usually enough to prevent people from having another one. Muscle pains that occur 24 to 48 hours after training are called “delayed muscle pain” (DOMS). This is because during the training small cracks appear in the muscles, damaging the muscle fibers. When muscles are torn, inflammation occurs and experts believe that this combination of tears and inflammation causes muscle pain. But this is not bad. As the muscles heal, they become stronger, which means the muscles become bigger. The pain is easier to heal after training, using certain post-training strategies. Here are some easy to follow tips on how to speed up recovery from sore muscles.
Training day in, day out
By training your muscles day in and day out, you give them a chance to recover. Daily strength training only continues to tire the muscles without the benefits of muscle healing. Either you train every other day, or you do strength training one day and aerobic exercise the next. If you keep training like this, you will heal faster.
The best way to avoid intense muscle pain after exercise is not to push too much. Listen to your body; if you start to feel muscle pain and tiredness, stop. The more you push your muscles, the more they hurt and the greater the risk that you will actually damage your muscles.
Have a high-protein snack
Eating a high-protein snack after exercise gives your muscles the fuel they need to recover more quickly. Protein, lean chicken or turkey and skim milk are high protein and low fat products. Better yet, take an ounce of raw nuts or add some beans to your salad.
Increase Cooling down period after workout
If you cool down for 10 minutes at the end of your workout, your muscles will regenerate faster. Cooling down should consist of some walking or slow running and stretching the muscles to relax them.
Use heat pads.
Heated cushions and pads have proven to be effective in relieving training pain, especially if they are localized. Heat pads won’t help you much if all your muscles are in pain. Heat has been shown to have an anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect.
Take Tylenol or other form of anti-inflammatory medication. Using an anti-inflammatory drug as prescribed can help reduce muscle pain. If you are using a product that is available over the counter, follow the dosage guidelines.
Drink your cherry juice
Studies published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine have shown that drinking cherry juice before and after exercise can reduce muscle aches and pains. Cherries have long been said to have a positive effect on muscles, but this study was the first of its kind.
Take a hot bath
Heat can help you relax and increase blood circulation in the sore muscles thus alleviating pain and speeding the healing process.