Do you have muscle pain preventing you from hitting the gym anytime soon? These effective muscle strain and sports injury treatments can help speed up your recovery. But before that, let’s discuss why muscles get injured in the first place.
The belief that high-intensity activities such as lifting weights, cycle sprints, or Tabata training are the primary causes of muscle injury is partially true. The fact is, even simple walking, running, and jumping can cause muscle strain without a proper warm-up. In other words, muscles get injured because of poor conditioning. For instance, when you are going jogging, warming up for at least a couple of minutes is important as it prepares your muscles, preventing tearing. Otherwise, here are some natural ways to relieve muscle soreness:
Water replaces electrolytes, which fuel muscles. It contains magnesium, potassium, sodium, and calcium. The aforementioned minerals repair cells and tissues, speeding up muscle recovery. So if you are experiencing aches and pains after working out, don’t forget to drink plenty of water. Vegetable and fruit smoothies are better alternatives, too.
This is pretty straightforward, when your muscles get injured, give them a break. Allow the tissues and cells to heal by avoiding movements that can worsen the strain, such as curling up or crossing your legs. As much as possible, sit and stand upright. That promotes good blood circulation, allowing the nutrients necessary to heal the injury to reach different body parts.
When you work out, your muscles can get overstretched or pulled. Supplements provide all essential vitamins and minerals essential to support muscle growth and development. And when you get injured, they help speed up the healing process, so taking supplements is recommended, particularly to the regular gym-goers. Some of the most popular include protein, branched-chain amino acid, and creatine.
This is designed for self-myofascial or simply self-massage that allows people to have a therapeutic massage without going to a spa. Lie on your back on it and start rolling. You can do the same with your legs. This soothes tight muscles, promoting good blood circulation. Aside from that, it also improves flexibility and range of motion. So if you are into fitness, a foam roller is a must-have. Avoid hunching as it creates more tension; practice good posture instead. And rather than holding your breath, try breathing calmly to improve the blood flow.
Hot water dilates the blood vessels, in contrast to cold water that constricts them. And as we have mentioned, blood carries essential nutrients to heal your injuries. Taking a hot bath helps. Just soak your entire body for at least 30 minutes. You may also add Epsom salt if you want. It contains magnesium, which maximizes the effect of a hot tub. Just avoid staying longer as it can deplete the nutrients in your skin. Repeat as necessary.
This may sound contrary to what we have said before, but consistent physical movement increases your muscle tolerance until it hurts no more. It can be compared to skin that gets exposed to tightness repeatedly. Over time, it develops calluses that protect skin from getting inflamed and irritated. But of course, avoid being aggressive. Start with light movements such as stretching and walking.
Essential oils contain analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties responsible for their therapeutic effects. It’s no wonder why they have always been used in Ayurvedic medicine for chronic pain. Some of the best essential oils for muscle soreness include eucalyptus, chamomile, peppermint, and rosemary. Just apply it to the desired area and gently massage. Re-apply as necessary.
This temporarily suspends the blood flow to the injured body part, reducing pain. It’s recommended to apply ice immediately right after an injury. Wrap it in a towel, then place it over the inflamed skin. A reusable hot cold pack works well, too. Afterward, apply an ointment or essential oil. Then elevate your leg to drain the fluid out the swollen area and accelerate healing.
When you are asleep, your body produces more protein to repair torn tissues and ligaments. If you have an injury, avoid staying up late to help your muscle recover faster. Try setting up the mood of your room or wear an eye-patch to induce sleep.
Experiencing muscle pain occasionally is normal since it’s always part of health and fitness. But if it lasts for more than three weeks already, consider consulting a physician as it can also be a sign of an underlying problem.