The new year is upon us and it’s time to start taking those resolutions seriously. If you’re like most people, you have resolved to do something about your health. Exercising more, losing weight, or building muscle are among some of the most popular. If you haven’t been in a routine exercise regimen in a while and are planning to start one then you can expect to have some soreness and fatigue. Here are some ways that you can prevent some of that and a few methods to soothe it once it sets in.
Stretching Before Exercise
Stretching may be the single most important exercise of your entire routine. Even some gentle stretches before you hit the weights or climb on that treadmill will make a difference. Stretching will not only help you avoid some soreness, but it will make your recovery time quicker and keep you from having a serious injury as well. When you start stretching you should focus on the muscles that you know you’ll be using the most in your workout. If you’re going to be running, then start with some thigh, knee, and ankle stretches. But don’t forget to include some that cover your whole body as well.
Stretching not only helps bring blood and oxygen to your muscles but it also releases endorphins that will put you in a better mood and help your workout to go more smoothly. Here’s a tip for you. To avoid injury and get better results, warm up your muscles some before you stretch. A light walk will do the trick. Or, even better, hop into your hot tub for a soak! The heat will warm up your muscles and make them flexible and ready for stretching and exercising.
Cardio Before Weight
Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) is caused by doing too much too soon. Many people decide that they want to get into shape so they go to the gym and hit the weights. If you’re going straight to lifting heavy weights with a set of muscles that haven’t been warmed up properly, then you’re doing yourself a great disservice. Not only is your workout not going to be as effective, but it is going to cause you a lot of discomfort later.
Instead of going full Ferrigno right off the bat, try doing some cardio first. Ten minutes of walking or jogging on the treadmill will do wonders for you. Using a stair-climber would be even better since it encourages the use of your whole body.
Ice Then Heat
Many doctors and sports medicine professionals recommend using ice after a heavy workout. This means placing ice packs on the areas that were worked the most or soaking in an ice bath for 10 minutes if your gym has one. It greatly reduces the chances of sore muscles later.
A few hours after your workout it’ll be time to apply some heat. The best way to get heat to all of your major muscles at once is in a hot tub. Soaking in a hot tub for 30 minutes or more after a workout is a great way to keep oxygen-rich blood flowing to your muscles and help them recover. The jets in a hot tub will work wonders on the aches that do develop. On top of that, a nice hot tub soak after a hard workout feels amazing!
At Aqua Pools we can definitely help you with that. A hot tub is not only a great way to recover after a workout, but it’s also very relaxing every other day. We have a lot of them to choose from. Give us a call or come visit us in our showrooms in Worth or Homer Glen. One of our experts will be happy to show you the ones that will best meet your needs.