- Move – Fight the urge to just rest your sore muscles during the day. Low stress, low impact movement such as a long walk, riding a bike or hitting the elliptical machine on a low setting will help reduce soreness and stiffness.
- Hydrate – Drink lots of water to help prevent and reduce the buildup of lactic acid.
- Rest – Get plenty of sleep. This is when a large portion of healing occurs. Wait 24 hours before another hard workout on the same muscle group.
- Stretch – This will also help to get the lactic acid out of your muscles much more quickly than just resting. Warm up the muscles before stretching with at least two sets of jumping jacks for 30 seconds per set or a similar exercise. Cold stretching isn’t recommended.
- Heat – Heat will help blood flow to the muscles. This will help the rebuilding process and provide some relief. Try a heating pad, sauna, hot bath or shower.
- Eat – Proper nutritional intake is very important before and after each workout. Think of this as high octane fuel that will speed the rebuilding and regrowth of stressed muscles. Take in 1 gram of protein per day for every pound of body weight. This will speed up recovery times considerably because protein is the primary nutrient for building new lean mass. Use a whey protein supplement, as well as proteins found in foods. A crucial time to take in protein is within 1 hour post-workout.
A great whey protein supplement – Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard. I don’t make any money from this endorsement, I just like the product…Beachbody offers a similar blend for 2X more $
As a personal fitness trainer I’ve heard lots of stories from clients about how sore they’ve been, especially after their first few sessions. The really important thing to remember is that it will pass, your body will heal and you’ll become stronger every time we make those tears to the muscles. Anyone who has trained with me can tell you that you will actually start to look forward to having some soreness. Heck, one day you might even show up asking me to “make it hurt”