It’s Wellness Wednesdays! Let’s talk about the world’s worst sore muscle advice and what to do instead. One day you’re pleased with yourself for finally painting the guest room or spending an extra half hour on the rowing machine. The next day you can barely brush your teeth because you’re sore all over. You probably have a case of delayed onset muscle soreness.
That achy feeling is caused by microscopic tears in your muscle tissue, which leads to inflammation and discomfort. It’s most likely to appear about 1 or 2 days after you engage in strenuous activity or a task that you’re not used to doing.
While it’s nothing serious, there are some things that will relieve the pain and some things you’re better off avoiding.
Worst Advice for Treating Sore Muscles
1. Become a couch potato.
Inactivity will prolong your soreness. Daily conditioning is better for your body than popping into the gym once every three months.
2. Assume all pain is the same.
Sudden pain requires a different approach. Stop what you’re doing. Get medical attention if needed for muscle strains and tears.
3. Worry about lactic acid.
Experts used to believe that soreness was caused by lactic acid buildups. Research now shows that lactic acid dissolves almost instantly after exercising.
Instead, Help Your Sore Muscles
1. Stay active.
Moving around increases blood flow. That circulates more oxygen and nutrients to all your body parts so they can heal and grow stronger.
2. Cross train.
Alternating between kayaking and running targets different muscles. Give your arms a day off and work your legs instead. Head for the pool instead of the jogging track.
3. Intensify workouts gradually.
Increasing your workout load by 10% or less a week is a good rule to follow. That means running 11 miles if you usually do 10.
4. Drink water.
Dehydration weakens muscles and makes them more prone to soreness. Carry a water bottle with you to the gym. Sip water all day long.
5. Cool down and stretch.
Schedule about 5 to 10 minutes at the end of each workout for gentler movements and flexibility training. Bicycle slowly or walk in place. Perform a few static stretches. Move slowly and evenly. Hold each position without straining or bouncing.
6. Get a massage.
Book a session with a sports massage specialist or watch a video about how to perform a self-massage. There are many effective techniques you can use at home or anywhere.
7. Practice visualization.
Visualization and meditation can decrease pain without any harmful side effects. Sit down and imagine your breath soothing away all discomfort.
8. Apply ice.
Ice works best when applied at the first sign of soreness. Protect your skin by wrapping a towel around an ice pack or a bag of frozen vegetables.
9. Use heat.
Heat can aggravate inflammation, but it also relaxes muscles and reduces spasms. Take a warm bath or apply a heat pack. Ask your doctor about ultrasound and electrical current treatments.
10. Visit a health food store.
Some people get positive results from certain herbs and vitamins. You may want to try vitamin E supplements or willow bark tea. Tell your doctor about any substances you use to ensure they’re suitable for you.
11. Take a pain reliever.
Many over-the-counter products provide quick relief. Aspirin and ibuprofen are often recommended because they treat both pain and inflammation. If you use pain relieving creams, avoid tight bandages or heating pads to prevent skin irritation.
Regular physical activity helps you to live a longer and healthier life. You can get fit without any muscle soreness, but for occasional soreness due to over activity, try these tips for some quick relief.
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I really wanted to talk about this topic today because over 30% of Americans suffer from some kind if chronic or severe pain, according to the IOM, CDC, and NIH. Specifically, 116 million Americans are in pain! The number of individuals who live in pain is far greater than the 30.3 million Americans who have diabetes, 25.4 million people who suffer from cancer, and 14.7 million individuals who are ill with heart disease combined. Chronic pain affects more people than major chronic illnesses do, and the economic cost and complexity of chronic pain are vast.
I use functional medicine and lifestyle medicine as the first line of treatment, before medications, to treat lifestyle-related chronic diseases and chronic pain. Lifestyle-related chronic diseases include diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and some cancers, just to name a few. Lifestyle practices, such as eating a whole-food plant-based diet and regular physical activity, can help you lose weight, and maybe reverse some chronic diseases and chronic pain (if you suffer from them). In certain cases, these approaches may even outperform pharmaceutical therapy.
You can adopt healthy lifestyle practices that improve your health and enrich your life, which can in turn improve the lives of those close to you. You have the power to break the cycle of poor health and improve your pain and inflammation, so that you can leave a legacy of health to your loved ones.
Is Supplementation Right For You?
Dietary supplements can be a great way to promote better health and manage chronic pain. They can provide the essential nutrients your body needs but may not be receiving from food sources alone. For those dealing with chronic pain, dietary supplements can be useful as they help to reduce inflammation and support healthy joint function while providing relief from discomfort. Depending on your individual needs, some beneficial dietary supplements for managing chronic pain include omega-3 fatty acids, glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate, turmeric, curcumin, magnesium, vitamin D3, and CBD oil.
But don’t think that just popping a few pills will solve all of your problems! Dietary supplements are meant to supplement an overall healthy lifestyle—they cannot replace medication or other treatments prescribed by your physician. Additionally, make sure to talk to your doctor before starting any new supplement routine, as some supplements can interact with certain medications or conditions. So if you’re dealing with chronic pain, dietary supplements may be worth a try—just remember that they are not miracle workers! With the right plan and an overall healthy lifestyle, dietary supplements can help support better health and ease discomfort associated with chronic pain.
My Pain Support Bundle is excellent for chronic pain, muscle pain, and spasms. Designed to calm and support the nervous system, support a healthy immune system and a healthy inflammatory response. This formula supplies a powerful synergistic blend of nutrients, enzymes and herbs clinically shown to support a healthy inflammatory response.
These are my favorite Pain Relieving Superfoods and Supplements to use! This Pain Support Bundle will ensure you have the intake of the important foods to decrease inflammation and boost your innate wellness day and night. Taken together, it’s a solid plan for increasing your body’s natural resiliency while naturally relieving pain.
Tools For Pain Management
A Tens Unit can provide drug-free pain relief for sore or aching muscles of the lower back, shoulder, arm, leg and more. This electrotherapy device is widely used for rehabilitation after injury and for the treatment of acute and chronic pain.
TENS Electrotherapy at Omron Healthcare
Hot and Cold Therapy
Hot and cold therapy is often used for pain management. This gel pack provides a moist therapeutic heat when heated, while soothing cold feeling when used cold. It is also designed to prevent trauma to the skin or nerves.
Please talk with your doctor about any complementary health approaches, including supplements, you use.
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