How do you feel on Sunday night after working all weekend in your yard, or doing a marathon of home repair or house cleaning? You'd rather not move for hours, right?
In order to prevent muscle stiffness and soreness, try these seven suggestions below before relaxing for the night.
Even though you might want to flop onto the coach, cold drink in hand, first move a little more. Slowly and gently is fine. Get the blood flowing into those sore muscles by simply walking around the house or around your neighborhood, or raising your arms over your head while breathing deeply.
Before relaxing in your recliner, stretch your muscles before they stiffen, helping them to become more pliable and flexible. As oxygen flows into your muscles, you'll speed their recovery. Whether your choose yoga, Pilates or stretches of your own, you're relieving muscle soreness. Bonus, Dr. Andrew Weil says muscles contain stretch receptors which can improve your mood.
Water is the ultimate rehydrator. Avoid caffeine and alcohol because they can dehydrate you.
Gently massage overworked muscles, prompting nutrient-rich blood to flow through, replenishing them. Better yet, get a massage from someone you like.
Pack in Protein
Your muscles are hungry after exertion. They crave protein. Choose natural sources such as fish, poultry, lean meats, nuts, lentils and quinoa.
Soak in a Tub
A warm bath cures many ills, and always helps ease stiff muscles. You'll also sleep better after a bath, helping you awake refreshed. If you're brave, try a hot/cold treatment, alternating water temperatures every couple minutes, to open blood vessels more.
Ease Back In
When your muscles are feeling rested, ease back into your normal fitness program gradually so your body has time to catch up with all the plans you have in store.
Remember, the most effective way to relieve muscle soreness after an active weekend is to move a bit more, drink lots of water and nourish your muscles back to health.