When we’ve physically pushed our body to the limit, we need to show it some tender lovin’ care post exercise.
You stretch before exercise to loosen muscles and joints, but post-exercise stretching is just as, if not more important. When we exercise, our muscles are in a constant state of contraction so it’s vital to stretch and elongate those muscles in order to avoid stiffness, tension and spasm. Yoga is another beautiful way to gently stretch the muscles and calm the nervous system.
When the body is dehydrated is stiffens and we’re more likely to experience tension and cramping. Keep hydrated by drinking at least 3 litres of pure, alkaline water daily. Using an unsweetened or naturally sweet electrolyte powder post-exercise helps to balance our bodies minerals to aid recovery. Coconut water is also excellent for hydration due to its electrolyte content.
Not only is this mineral essential for healthy nerves, bones, heart and digestion, it also supports energy metabolism and relieves muscular aches and stiffness. If you’re an athlete or exercise a lot, take 5g magnesium powder morning and night.
There’s nothing better than a steaming hot bath to soothe tired, aching muscles. Add Epsom salts to relieve muscle tension and essential oils to calm the mind and nervous system. Cryotherapy or ice-bathing is also amazing for the acceleration of muscle repair and recovery as is alternating between hot and cold bathing to promote cell renewal.
Light therapy, also called heliotherapy or phototherapy, is a form of treatment that has been used for thousands of years to heal anything from psoriasis to chronic pain. Civilizations such as Ancient Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians used natural light, exposing people to sunshine, to treat various ailments. Light therapy is now also used to accelerate muscle recovery after exercise and for deep tissue healing after injury.
Circulation is key to moving lactic acid and that tired, sore, stiff feeling out of you! The lymphatic system which is the transporter system in our bodies is responsible for releasing exercise by-products such as lactic acid so go for a walk, do some light skipping or bouncing on a trampoline – anything that enables circulation and therefore stimulating of the lymphatic system.
An obvious one but oh so important. Our bodies are marvellous things, we can stretch and push it to boundaries beyond belief and it is capable of so much, but it has its limits and we need to respect them. When you exercise a lot it’s important to take rest days in between. Your body needs time to repair and regenerate tired, worn tissues. Take it up a notch and treat yourself to a massage to relieve tension and ease tight muscles. A few acupuncture sessions also help to work on the meridian system in our bodies and relieve deep tension.