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7 Little Known Sore Muscle Remedies

7 Little Known Sore Muscle Remedies

Following a rigorous workout, the feeling of sore, fiercely used muscles presents a pretty great sense of accomplishment. There’s really no better way to own that feeling than slipping into bed for a well deserved, regenerative sleep. A serious workout, such as HITT, leaves your muscles aching and raw, a feeling that stays with you all day. The pain can often be so bad that training on subsequent days is simply out of the question. Even if you take the proper steps prior to and after a workout, you can still suffer from intense muscle pain. Maybe hindsight is 20/ 20 but that doesn’t help now. So, what can you do?

List of Sore Muscle Remedies

1. Persevere

Your muscles can experience soreness simply from using them normally and not in any intense way. When achy, tired muscles become a nag, combat the pain with some exercise. Starting out, muscles might feel extra-achy, like they don’t want to go on. Weary muscles will often resist a workout at first but once you get into it, they usually loosen up and the ache disappears after a few minutes of brisk movement. Keep in mind that if muscles are sore from an intense bout of prior exercise, you should really go easy on them or you can easily pull or strain one or more muscles with inaccurate movements.

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2. A Hot Soak

Taking the time to soak your tired or overused muscles in an extremely warm bath for 30-40 minutes accomplishes wonders for loosening up and relaxing the mind and body completely, creating an overall sync. While your muscles are stagnant and relaxed in the hot bath, the heat has the chance to offer some deep therapy. After a full soak, and perhaps even some gentle stretching while in the tub, getting out will feel so much easier then getting in.

3. Ice the Pain

Swelling is one of the key reasons muscles throw off intense pain and discomfort. Swelling is a renowned part of the muscle repair process, which can be undermined if you hit the gym again too hard and don’t allow for some recovery time. Icing the muscle, or muscles, can be the key to bringing down the swelling and relieving the relentless burn. This technique can accelerate muscle recovery and manage discomfort, simultaneously making the next day more manageable whether you’re working or working out.

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4. Heat the Ache

Where ice packs or baths combat inflammation and swelling, heat works to alleviate the pain directly. Over-the-counter heat rubs (like Tiger Balm and Deep Rub) offer relief through penetrating warmth, getting the blood moving to your overworked muscles. This helps to make them more limber and loose. Rubs can pump oxygen into tissues and dilate blood vessels, relaxing an overtaxed body.

5. Work Through the Pain

The well-known term “hair of the dog” is most often used in reference to hangovers but it also perfectly describes how a moderate workout can aid in recovery after intense exercise. Don’t jump back into anything intense. Take an easy and slow approach, indulging your muscles in some deep recovery with a relaxing yoga workout (where the stretching can also help immensely with the pain) or other light exercise that gets your blood moving at an easy speed and intensity.

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6. Repair with Massage

A soothing massage can be just what the doctor ordered for sore muscles. A.R.T., or Active Release Technique, is a massage treatment you can use to treat tired, stiff muscles and loosen them up by working on individual tissues and in between them too. Stretching during a massage can also do wonders. Forget deep-tissue massages and focus on a gentle rub instead. This can ease inflammation and relax tight muscles.

7. Embrace Your Mate

Curling up for a cuddle with your mate releases the “feel- good hormone,” also known as oxytocin, into the brain. Oxytocin aids in muscle repair, stabilizing blood sugar levels, decreasing discomfort, and ultimately repairing sore bodies. Cuddling can increase serotonin levels, release endorphins, and pump up energy via the body’s reserved fat which helps with muscle repair.

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If these sore muscle remedies didn’t get the job done, there is a chance that the pain is due to injuries. Keep in mind that muscle pains from exercising usually don’t last longer than a week. So, if the pain just won’t go away, seek a doctor.

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

How to Flow Your Way to a More Productive Life

Ebb and flow. Contraction and expansion. Highs and lows. It’s all about the cycles of life.

The entire course of our life follows this up and down pattern of more and then less. Our days flow this way, each following a pattern of more energy, then less energy, more creativity and periods of greater focus bookended by moments of low energy when we cringe at the thought of one more meeting, one more call, one more sentence.

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The key is in understanding how to use the cycles of ebb and flow to our advantage. The ability to harness these fluctuations, understand how they affect our productivity and mood and then apply that knowledge as a tool to improve our lives is a valuable strategy that few individuals or corporations have mastered.

Here are a few simple steps to start using this strategy today:

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Review Your Past Flow

Take just a few minutes to look back at how your days and weeks have been unfolding. What time of the day are you the most focused? Do you prefer to be more social at certain times of the day? Do you have difficulty concentrating after lunch or are you energized? Are there days when you can’t seem to sit still at your desk and others when you could work on the same project for hours?

Do you see a pattern starting to emerge? Eventually you will discover a sort of map or schedule that charts your individual productivity levels during a given day or week.  That’s the first step. You’ll use this information to plan your days going forward.

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Schedule According to Your Flow Pattern

Look at the types of things you do each day…each week. What can you move around so that it’s a better fit for you? Can you suggest to your team that you schedule meetings for late morning if you can’t stand to be social first thing? Can you schedule detailed project work or highly creative tasks, like writing or designing when you are best able to focus? How about making sales calls or client meetings on days when you are the most social and leaving billing or reports until another time when you are able to close your door and do repetitive tasks.

Keep in mind that everyone is different and some things are out of our control. Do what you can. You might be surprised at just how flexible clients and managers can be when they understand that improving your productivity will result in better outcomes for them.

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Account for Big Picture Fluctuations

Look at the bigger picture. Consider what happens during different months or times during the year. Think about what is going on in the other parts of your life. When is the best time for you to take on a new project, role or responsibility? Take into account other commitments that zap your energy. Do you have a sick parent, a spouse who travels all the time or young children who demand all of your available time and energy?

We all know people who ignore all of this advice and yet seem to prosper and achieve wonderful success anyway, but they are usually the exception, not the rule. For most of us, this habitual tendency to force our bodies and our brains into patterns of working that undermine our productivity result in achieving less than desired results and adding more stress to our already overburdened lives.

Why not follow the ebb and flow of your life instead of fighting against it?

    Featured photo credit: Nathan Dumlao via unsplash.com

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