When it hurts so good the day after your workout, you may be quick to reach for the bottle of ibuprofen or Tylenol. When you're experiencing sore muscles, mild pain from poor form (listen to your body. If you believe you're injured, visit your doctor), or other bodily aches, it might seem like a good time to pop in a few over-the-counter pain meds, right?
While pain medications are not 'bad' for treating soreness and physical aches (the bottle does say pain relief), there are other methods for helping and healing your body, many of which are more natural. Next time you feel sore, give these remedies a try:
*small disclaimer: we are not doctors and this is not medical advice. We are not advocating against medications for pain treatment, instead, we are suggesting the exploration of alternative methods for the common aches many of experience post-exercise.
1. Stretch it Out in Yoga
If you're not doing so already, incorporate a few yoga sessions into your weekly workout routine. Whether it be an instructor-led class, your own flow, our an online forum, maintaining a consistent yoga practice can benefit your body in numerous ways. Focus on correct form (showing off your flexibility is not the goal here) and breathing into each pose. If you have a specific injury or area of your body that is hurting, talk with the instructor about modifications and specific movements you can do to help relieve tension.
2. Roll Away the Pain
Foam rollers are incredible for your body and we recommend rolling out at least once a day. Even if you can't make it to the gym, foam rollers are compact (check out the travel sizes) and affordable. Pick one up to keep at home and read our post about why it's essential to foam roll. The first and most important tip: remember to breathe.
3. Hydrate Your Muscles
One of our favorite health tips for everything from weight loss to better sleep: hydrate! Drinking water is key to avoiding cramps, reducing inflammation, and relieving overall soreness in your body. If you're not drinking at least a few large bottles a day, you may have found the cause for your stiff limbs.