Workouts (weightlifting, especially) can cause calcium build-up in your muscles that form into knots. If you don't keep these at bay, they'll only get worse. Don't get me wrong - being sore is a great feeling because I know I've pushed myself... but in order to prevent injuries, I've learned several ways to help sore muscles.
Stretching - Whether you're just starting a workout routine, or working out 6 days a week like I do, it's important to make stretching a daily priority before and after your workout - no matter the intensity. It warms up your muscles and stretches them out so you're less likely to hurt yourself. Sometimes if I feel a little tight I'll stretch during my workout in between sets.
Foam Rolling - This quickly became my FAVORITE thing to do each workout and I was amazed at how much it helps keep my muscles calm. Ideally you want to use the foam roller before and after your workout. Gyms usually have several foam rollers you can use - but I got one for Christmas and I love having my own at home. You should foam roll for at least 30 minutes each time to make it effective. Your muscles will thank you, trust me!
Icyhot - I should buy stock in this stuff I use it so much. The hot/cold aspect helps to relieve muscle aches and knots. If you use the roller ball kind like I do - just be sure to rub it into your sore areas for a few minutes. (I actually do it twice before bed.) When I wake up my muscles feel so much better!
Epsom Salt Bath - Who doesn't love to take a bath? I save them for the weekends when I need to wind down after a long week and now I always add epsom salt. Epsom salt relaxes the nervous system, soothes back pain and relieves muscle strain and cramps. I will not judge you if you have a glass of wine, too. ;)
How do you fight sore muscles?
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