Exercise Recovery – Is Your Body Trying To Tell You Something?

Exercise Recovery – Is Your Body Trying To Tell You Something?

Author -  Good Health

Of course the amount of recovery you need depends on a number of things including your fitness level, intensity of exercise and how familiar your body is with the type of exercise.

Problems arise when we fail to notice the warning signs and solider on, leading to muscle aches, pains, joint injuries, and fatigue. Some muscle pain and stiffness called delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) occurs typically a day or two after a new exercise routine, particularly exercises such as running up and down hills and weights, where muscle fibres are torn to build stronger and firmer muscles.

Essential tips for better exercise recovery1.Hydrate and replace fluids - depending on what exercise you do, replacing lost fluids is essential to recovery, especially for marathon and endurance runners. Sometimes adding electrolytes to your water also helps. Interestingly enough coconut water is a completely natural way to restore lost fluids and is very similar to our own blood plasma. This is the water component of blood, which holds a host of important nutrients, lots of water and electrolytes. During WW2 coconut water was used in place of blood transfusions when blood supplies ran out. Fluids are essential because they support all metabolic functions in the body, helping transfer nutrients around the body and flush out toxins from the body. Dehydration also enhances muscles soreness.

2.Food - what you eat before and after a workout can greatly affect your performance and recovery. Once your energy stores are depleted it is essential to refuel so your body can repair tissues and recover. For example a lot of body builders consume protein because this type of exercise tears muscle fibres. Eating within an hour after intense exercise in a ratio of 2:1 to carbohydrates or proteins (protein powder is great in a juice or smoothie) helps the muscles recover quicker.

3.Massage and Stretching - Anything that helps improve circulation and sends nutrients to the cells for recovery, as well as the removal of waste products from tissues, are simple effective solutions for improving muscle recovery. Many runners also incorporate yoga into their training to improve muscle elasticity.

4.Rest - This doesn’t have to mean being a couch potato. It involves light exercise such as walking, swimming, yoga, Pilates, and even light jogging, all of which stimulate blood flow to the muscles and reduces muscle pain. It’s also really important to get plenty of sleep to allow your body to heal.

5.Ice baths or hot and cold therapy - It’s good enough for the All Blacks so it must be good. Many professional athletic teams take ice baths or use water contrast therapy, which alternates between hot and cold water several times, constricting and dilating blood vessels in an attempt to stimulate the waste products from tissues. Worth a go, particularly after a major sporting or training event.

6.An Epsom salt bath - Epsom salts are a source of magnesium sulphate and have been used for centuries as a muscle relaxant to ease muscle pain and stiffness, with the benefit of enhancing the elimination of toxins. Your skin is the largest organ in your body so the magnesium is well absorbed through the skin. The warm water, combined with Epsom salts, will increase circulation and reduce inflammation.

7.Anti-inflammatory herbs - Excessive inflammation causes and contributes to muscle soreness and joint pain and nature provides some of the best anti-inflammatory herbs to reduce inflammation.

Check out some of our favourite natural remedies that help combat inflammation…

Curcumin (Turmeric) - Curcumin, the active compound in Turmeric, is the most researched compound for its broad anti-inflammatory activities, decreasing many inflammatory pathways and a number of molecules involved in inflammation, one of the most important being COX-2 which is the same inflammatory pathway that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs work on. Curcumin is beneficial for reducing inflammation in both joint and muscle tissue, reducing stiffness, pain, swelling, helping many musculoskeletal conditions such as arthritis, tendonitis, bursitis, fibromyalgia and may help recover quicker from muscle strains. We recommend Good Health Turmeric 18500 Complex.

Bromelain - is an enzyme found in pineapple. It reduces inflammatory prostaglandins, benefiting conditions such as arthritis and musculoskeletal pain and inflammation, helping promote healing of connective tissue and muscles. We recommend Good Health Natural DigestionTM.

Ginger - the active compounds in Ginger may reduce inflammation and delay onset muscle soreness by inhibiting inflammatory prostaglandins and compounds that cause pain and inflammation in the body. We recommend Good Health Turmeric 18500 Complex.

White willow bark - the natural origin of aspirin. It provides natural analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties without the side effects of aspirin. Willow bark is particularly suited to muscle and joint pain and inflammation. We recommend Good Health 1-a-day Glucosamine or Good Health Arthrite XtraTM.

Boswellia is a resin from the bark of frankincense trees and has been used traditionally to treat pain and inflammation associated with arthritis, and any other inflammatory condition within the body. We recommend Good Health Turmeric 18500 Complex.

Ashwaganda is used to treat arthritic conditions, and other body aches because it contains naturally occurring compounds that are similar to steroids, which help relieve pain and reduce inflammation relieving stiffness and muscle aches, particularly those associated with fibromyalgia. We recommend Good Health Turmeric 18500 Complex & Good Health Stress & Vitality Support.

Devils Claw has been traditionally used as an analgesic (pain killer) to provide both anti-inflammatory actions, making it particularly beneficial for musculoskeletal pain (and arthritic pain). We recommend Good Health Arthrite XtraTM.

Magnesium and malic acid - a magic combination that has proven to be very effective for healthy muscles. Magnesium aids the relaxation of muscles by relaxing the muscle fibres that contract, reducing cramps and spasms. Low magnesium levels can lead to muscular tension and cramps and low blood levels are first indicated with either muscular cramps, spasms or an eyelid twitch. Increased levels of magnesium are required by those who exercise frequently, such as athletes, because it involves muscle contraction and relaxation. Malic acid pairs well with magnesium because both are important nutrients that work together within the cell to create energy, helping to combat and restore muscle fatigue.

MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane) is a naturally occurring sulphur-containing compound (sulphur is an important part of much of the body’s structural tissues). MSM has been clinically shown to have anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects, with studies supporting improved recovery and decrease in pain from sports injuries. We recommend Good Health PainexTM.

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