Soreness. It’s one of the most common excuses for skipping the gym. Muscle is built through a cycle of anabolism (protein synthesis) and catabolism (protein breakdown). During an intense workout, microtears in muscle tissue cause catabolism, and while your body begins to repair itself immediately after a workout the pain probably makes it seem like you’re never going to be yourself again. That’s why your body needs your help to repair those aching muscles.
In order to recuperate safely, maintain momentum and see gains, putting some time into your recovery is ABSOLUTELY essential. Here are some tips to help ease the pain and see the gain.
Stretch & cool down.
When you stretch after a workout, you feel the benefit of both physical and psychological effects. Since lactic acid builds up while you’re working out, it’s pretty common to feel sore and worn out. Stretching after a workout helps to increase circulation, keeping your muscles engaged and focused on the healing process.
Stretching is also the perfect opportunity to relax your mind. It’s a time to slow down, take some breaths and be in tune with what your body is feeling. This is more important than people think because when you’re paying attention to how your body feels you know when you need to take it easy and when you need to work a little harder on certain areas.
Engage in active recovery.
After any hard training session, the body needs time to recover. Many people take rest days, avoiding any physical activity, in order to recuperate. While this is a great way to give yourself a break and prevent injury, it could cause more harm than good. If you’re extremely sore remaining immobile could cause your muscles to tighten up as they recover. This means that when you get back in the gym things could be a little harder than they were the last time you hit the weights.
Active recovery, when done correctly, can reduce muscle soreness, and speed up the recovery process. It’s not intended to burn that many calories or to up your weights and resistance. Active recovery is about physically and psychologically recovering from the muscle and body stress of intense exercise, as well as lowering your heart rate and improving form. You can even perform active recovery as part of your cool-down from a HIIT session. Try using very light weights, yoga, foam rolling, or even a slow, 5-minute run. Try incorporating one active recovery day into your routine per week and see if it works for you! Remember, if you’re suffering from an injury, passive rest days are still the best option, you don’t want to worsen the damage! So make sure to pay attention to your body and take the route that will best suit you.
Eat carbs post-workout.
Your body’s ability to synthesize protein is greatly enhanced following a workout. That means it’s crucial to get the right nutrients in your body in order to slow down the breakdown process and repair those muscles. While you can probably guess that you’d need to eat something with protein in it, getting in carbs is just as important!
Carbohydrates replenish glycogen, which is the number one source of energy production for muscles. If weight loss is the aim, it’s okay to go for a lower carb snack or meal, like a protein shake or a healthy omelet with plenty of veggies. But if you want to gain weight or muscle, it’s important to have a bigger carb element, like a meal with rice, red meats and a healthy starch like sweet potatoes.
There are many factors contributing to muscle soreness and fatigue, but there are just as many recovery techniques to combat them. Remember to fuel your body properly through nutrition and hydration, stretch out your muscles and get lightly active during rest days (but know when to quit!). By making the most out of your post-workout time, you’ll be well on your way to seeing the results you want.
Invest in a good post-workout supplement.
Other nutrients important post-workout are potassium, magnesium and vitamins C, D and E. While naturally occurring in foods like milk, bananas, spinach, citrus fruits and whole grains, they’re also found in exercise supplements. Here at Sports Nutrition Supply we have created a supplement that contains everything you need to see a speedy recovery after a hard work-out.
Elite Aminos can be used to help maximize the body’s ability to regenerate or build new tissue necessary for optimal health. It not only provides excellent workout results, it is ideal for vegetarians and vegans. AminoLean, has a protein nutritional value of 99%. This means that 99% of its amino acids are used as “building blocks” in the body to build protein. In comparison, only 18% (maximum) of the amino acids from any other amino acid formula can be used as “building blocks”, and helps to build and repair muscles without taxing liver and kidney function. AminoLean is 100% predigested and 99% utilized for body protein synthesis with no metabolic waste. For sports, prevention, regeneration and anti-aging this is truly a remarkable product.