We guess that you are an enthusiastic gym geek who put in a little too much effort yesterday and now can’t move a limb. Or else why would you be scrolling through this page with a blanket over your head! Yes, you are suffering from muscle soreness and fatigue, you got that bit right. Now let us guess, you still haven’t managed to find a cure for your fatigue, right? We got this right, we are square. Ditching the competition, we are genuinely worried about your muscles. So let us help you by narrating the top 10 ways in which you can minimize muscle soreness and fatigue. You are in for some surprises, although we dare say you wouldn’t be jumping in surprises! We are only kidding! Let us begin, shall we?
Ah, but first, let us reiterate what you are probably feeling now. It is worth knowing the symptoms of muscle fatigue. This exercise will serve two purposes. One, it will help you establish for sure that what you are suffering from is indeed muscle fatigue and soreness. Second, in the future, you won’t have to do the guesswork whenever you feel all fatigued and tired the next morning after the workout. What are these symptoms? Well, here are a few:
- 1- Soreness (You must be saying genius!)
- 2- Excessive pain in one specific area
- 3- Struggling to breath
- 4- Muscular twitching
- 5- Cramps and trembling
Why getting rid of muscle soreness and fatigue is important?
Of course, you want to get back to the gym and start doing your stuff. But there are more important reasons than your geeky enthusiasm. When you are suffering from muscle fatigue and soreness, your muscles cannot perform the usual function with the usual force, as they used to do. This is an alarming thing, and if the situation doesn’t improve even after trying a few of the above-listed techniques, you should see a physiotherapist. If you don’t pay immediate attention to this issue, it can lead to a serious secondary disorder or dislocation. Now we don’t want that to happen, do we?
10 ways you can minimize muscle soreness and fatigue
No one gets straight to the point anymore, do they? But we do. Without further ado, let us have a look at the 10 ways in which you can minimize muscle soreness and fatigue.
1- An ice massage
It doesn’t matter if it is snowing outside, the time has come for some drastic steps. Surely, you don’t want to be stuck with soreness? Ok, so we need you to find a block of ice or freeze one yourself in the refrigerator. No, snow won’t do, stop distracting us with these ideas! Ok, so rub those muscles which feel most sore with the help of ice. An important thing to note here is that you should be rubbing in the direction of the muscle. That way you stretch as well as a rub. The next question to be answered is the time. How long should you ice massage the aching muscles? We would say half an hour, thrice a day ought to do the trick. You can customize the timing, we are not going to be too strict about that. Ice is a great tool to relieve pain by numbing the nerve endings that are responsible for producing the sensation of pain. It is best to administer ice within 24-36 hours of soreness and fatigue.
2- Use essential oils
We don’t mean to say that you have to rub the whole hurting area with essential oils. Rather, follow the steps we narrate to you in this regard. Do you have any massage oil that you normally use or is stocked somewhere on a shelf in your home? We see you are nodding your head in affirmative, good. Now, don’t start the massage yet. First, add about 10 drops of essential oil to this oil. Let us help you with essential oils as well, in case you haven’t heard of these before. Extracted from plants, essential oils are of various types and serve various purposes. To treat muscle soreness and fatigue, we would heavily recommend lavender or rosemary. You must be wondering, what does an essential do? Well, a massage with essential oils will improve blood circulation, which is a crucial event in muscle recovery.
3- Sometimes ibuprofen works too!
Sometimes, yes. This isn’t a treatment that you should become addicted to. If you are a regular gym trainer or a professional athlete, we suggest you try pain relievers as the last resort. The reason for this is simple. You hit the gym hard daily, you are bound to get sore and fatigued muscles every day. You are not telling us you will pop pills every day to get rid of this lethargic condition. It is a bad idea. But for one or two times, there is no harm in using a pain reliever like ibuprofen. These tablets can diminish the extent of the inflammation and provide you some real quick relief. We are not sure about the dose, so we will refrain from playing the doctor here. The best approach would be to move a muscle, even if it hurts, and call your doctor!
Some of you might be allergic to essential oils, so you would have to rely on a sports cream. Yes, essential oil allergies are real and you should be aware of your sensitivity. Anyhow, as far as the creams are concerned, these work in a manner not too different from the essential oils. There are many popular creams and balms available in the market that can provide considerable relief. Density wise, there is a huge difference between essential oil and cream. Hence, a cream is likely to stay on for longer. The best thing to do would be to rub this cream on the aching muscles at night, and then have a great, relaxing nap!
5- Warm up your muscles
Massage chairs and massage pads have gained popularity in the last few years or so. The reason is their optimal efficiency as well as pinpoint precision and accuracy. These heating devices can relieve the pain in a magical manner. Had we said this all ten years ago, you wouldn’t have believed half of it but now, well it is a different story altogether. Usually, these heating pads come with an instruction manual to follow, so we are not going to burden you with any specific instructions. However, you must not overdo this, even if it sounds comforting. If you are using a heating pad, repeating the process thrice a day ought to do the trick. Not more than thirty minutes at any cost! Comforting heating pads and chairs come into play once it is past a couple of days but your muscles are still sore and hurting.
6- Mother Nature might help you!
If nothing works for you, you can always seek the help of Mother Nature, can’t you? And by that, we mean a remedy that has been tested and tried in many studies and proven to be quite effective. We are talking about Bromelain. Not many people have heard of this enzyme, so we are not surprised if you are among those. This is an enzyme that is extracted from the stems of a pineapple tree. The extraction process is a detailed one, so we are ditching the boring bit. Once you have the extract, all that you have to do is apply over the area that hurts the most. We must mention here that this is an enzyme that is commonly used for treating injuries that lead to bruising or swelling. The quantity is something that you will have to be careful about. Typically, 500mg is the recommended dose i.e. if you are going to use this pineapple enzyme twice or thrice every day.
7- Do it again what caused it
GET UP AND DO SOME STRETCHES. Ouch, that sounds like capital punishment to someone who is suffering from muscle soreness and fatigue. But you will be amazed when you get to know how crucial exercise is for restoring your muscles to the normal state. Now, by exercise, we don’t mean that we want you to lift weights and stuff. No, start it gently and take things lightly till you feel a definite improvement of some sort. For example, if you think that your legs are too cramped to allow you a walk, you can lift a few lightweight dumbbells to get back that gym feel. Stretching and warm-up exercise have proven to be the most effective therapy for muscle soreness and fatigue as well.
8- Relax in the tub
This is probably the coziest treatment that we are going to discuss. Fill up your bathing tub with warm water but don’t enter just yet. Grab some bathing salts from the nearest relevant store or book them online. Come to think of it, make things a little fragrant as well if you have a taste for this sort of thing. Next, throw in some drops of any of the essential oils that we mentioned earlier. And now, his or her highness can jump into the bathing tub and just relax. Think about all the good stuff while the warm water takes care of your sore muscles!
9- Start believing in homeopathy
We don’t want to leave any avenues unexplored, so why not try homeopathy? We know not many people are big fans of this branch of treatment. But you will find some truly inspiring stories from the people who benefited from homeopathic remedies. You can look up on the internet for a relevant homeopathic remedy that serves as an antidote to muscle soreness and fatigue. A long list will appear but you have to consult an expert before you can make a final choice. The most popular homeopathic remedy for sore muscles is Arnica30X. We are not going to talk about it in detail here, but it has proven to be an effective cure for muscular inflammation and pain resulting from the strenuous physical workout. The best bit about such remedies is, of course, the fact that they can’t harm you even if they aren’t showing the promised results.
10- Don’t do anything stupid
This isn’t a remedy, it is a word of advice. There are countless people out there, who once suffered from muscle soreness only. But they played the doctor, diagnosed their condition wrongly, and then suggested treatment for themselves, far worse than the diagnosis. We are pleading with you, please don’t repeat the mistakes made by these people. If none of the treatments that we have discussed work for you, then you must consult a physiotherapist. In some cases, it is better to consult the therapist first before you start subjecting your body to the aforementioned treatments. Please, please, please don’t complicate things for you!
What is delayed muscle soreness?
This is just a fancy little term used by those who want to sensationalize this condition. Let us explain how. Say you hit the gym today real hard, then you sipped post-workout and then jumped straight to the bed. You were perfectly fine when you climbed into bed, yet the next morning, your body feels like a log. Your muscles hurt badly but you don’t know why! This is the concept behind delayed muscle fatigue and soreness. You didn’t feel the pain yesterday that you should have felt because of the extensive workout you did yesterday! Simple, isn’t it?
As you can guess from the sudden change in our tone, it is time to wrap up things. We do hope that you learned some new tips and tricks to cure muscle soreness and fatigue. One of these tricks is bound to work! We must reiterate that if nothing works for you, you must book an appointment with a physiotherapist. Don’t play the doctor, rather, play it smart as you should!