Many people include exercising more and joining a gym or fitness center in their New Years resolutions. However, after that first workout or two, the soreness kicks in and can make working through the soreness difficult. Here are some tips that help to alleviate muscle soreness, decrease inflammation, and keep you on the track to health.
- Contrast Showers
- Many athletes swear by ice baths after a tough workout. There are increasing studies showing that muscles recover faster and performance increases when contrast baths are used. Contrast showers are easy to do at home. You run a hot shower and stand in it for about 5 minutes. Turn the water to cold and stay under it for 30 seconds. Repeat this 3 times. A study of rugby players showed that athletes performed better and reported being less sore the day after contrast baths versus 5-minute ice baths.
- Castor oil
- Topical castor oil is amazingly anti-inflammatory and can be used for everything from detoxification, to hormone balancing, to aching joints and muscles. Just be careful, it stains!
- Herbal formulations
- Some useful herbs are passionflower, Siberian ginseng, crampbark, and cordyceps. Call us to make an appointment for a personalized formulation!
- Proper Nutrition: Protein, BCAAs
- Don’t forget to give your muscles the building blocks to repair and grow. A good protein powder and BCAAs (branched chain amino acids) are integral to fast recovery and muscle repair. Feeding your body is one of the most important things to do in helping to build muscle and alleviate soreness. Other amino acids that aid in increased blood flow, increased growth hormone secretion, and muscle building are: choline, glutamine, and arginine.
- Mitochondrial Support
- The mitochondria are the powerhouses of the cell. Carnitine and acetyl L-carnitine have been shown to decrease inflammation and carnitine is one of the key components in energy synthesis of cells, including muscle cells. B-vitamins are also imperative to make those powerhouses run. Magnesium is also key to mitochondria as well as muscle soreness.
- Hormone Optimization
- Make sure your testosterone and DHEA levels are optimal so you can grow your muscles and recover faster. Low estrogen can cause muscle achiness and joint pain. Also making sure your thyroid and adrenals are in tip top shape will also help to recover and get the most from your workout.
- Sleeping at least 8 hours a night will not only help you wake rested and energetic for another gym session, but also helps to increase growth hormone. Growth hormone is secreted at night during deep, restful sleep and while doing fasted strenuous exercise.
Before starting any regimen, its best to talk with your doctor and discuss other options for faster recovery and a healthier you! I’d love to help you recover faster from work outs and keep your nervous and endocrine system healthy while you gain strength, endurance, and health! Make an appointment at 208-338-0405.