10 Rituals to Help You Get the Most of Your Workout
We put so much focus on getting fit and working out. Due to this, we often get up early, hit the gym after work, or even workout on our lunch breaks. We focus on what to eat before the workout and how to push the barriers of the workout to the limit for maximum physical gain. While all of this is very important, what happens after the workout has been completed is just as important. But, do we talk about this much? No! Remember, what you do after your workout routine is crucial to having a healthy workout! We have a few tips that you can utilize on your next trip to the gym.
Do Not Neglect the Cool-Down Exercises
It can be easy to skip the cool-down exercises when you are in a hurry to get out of the gym. These exercises, such as walking or lifting light weights, help to bring the muscles back down from a strenuous exercise in a soft manner. Make sure to complete these after every session to give the muscles a chance to release some of the lactic acids that have built up from the prior session. Cooling down properly helps the muscles to bounce back later, thus eliminating some of the soreness that is often felt after a workout.
Stretching is Vital
Most people look at stretching as a beginning step in any workout, which it should be. However, it is just as important after your cool down exercises to stretch out the muscles. This allows the muscle fibers to relax and release in an appropriate manner. By making sure that stretching is a part of every post-workout routine, the lactic acid can be knocked off the muscles a little bit quicker. This helps people recover from the post-workout soreness that everyone knows.
Drink Water and Plenty of it
It’s not unusual to significantly underestimate the amount of sweat that is released after a workout. This fluid needs to be replaced to ensure your heart rate returns to normal. When the body is low on fluid, the heart rate rises. To fix this, make sure to drink some water after every workout routine. This is a huge step in recovering faster.
Replace the Electrolytes
It is also important to replace the electrolytes that disappear during a workout. This includes sodium and potassium. Without proper electrolyte replacement, cramps can set up throughout the body. While ingesting massive amounts of sugar should be avoided, it is important to make sure to consume something with electrolytes in it. Combining this with water and stretching will help increase that post-workout recovery.
Foam Roller for Good Measure
Foam rollers have become popular after a strenuous workout and for a good reason. These foam rollers will help to compress the muscles. When combined with stretching, these foam rollers will help to release the lactate that has built up in the muscles. Using this on the sore muscles can help you feel ready to go for the next workout the following day. Give it a try and watch how much faster the muscles recover.
Don’t Skip a Meal
Almost everyone has some sort of post-workout meal. This should be packed with protein to help refuel the muscle fibers that have been broken down after the session; however, building up those carbohydrate stores are also important. It is these stores of carbs that give you energy after any strenuous workout. Without the carbs and protein, all the workout will do is deplete the body of its muscle mass and energy stores. A good meal with carbs and protein is important.
Track the Progress of the Workout
After the workout has been finished, it is important to track the progress of the workout. Be sure to compare the workout to the goals that were put in place. After this, you should check to see whether or not the goals were met. If not, think about the strategies that can be put in place to achieve those goals. If the goals have been met, it might be time to make new ones.
Take a Shower and Change
Most people don’t forget to shower; however, it is important to try and get in the shower soon after the workout has been finished. The hot water of the shower will help to relax the muscles and release some of the tension that has been built up. While scrubbing the body from top to bottom, think about another round of stretching in the shower. Put on some clean clothes afterward and you will feel as good as new! If you prefer a bath, don’t be afraid to switch it up from time to time. The key is to utilize water to help with massaging those sore muscles.
Think About a Massage
Some people like to go and get a massage after they workout. A massage from a professional can help to release the deep lactic acid that is hard to get to. While a visit to a professional could be expensive, going once in a while can be truly beneficial to the recovery process. Check some reviews online and find one that fits with what you need. The muscles may feel looser than they ever have before after a professional massage. There are also different types of massages so don’t be afraid to try different ones to find the one that works best for you.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
The ultimate trick to recovery is to try and get a good night’s sleep after a workout. This is the type of recovery that is truly needed to maximize the benefit out of everything that is above. While eight hours per night is recommended, don’t be afraid to try and get more. This might be necessary if you have been sleep deprived after a long week. Try to limit your screen time before bed because this will make it easier to fall asleep. Caffeine should also be avoided shortly before bed time. When this is finalized, you should wake up in the morning feeling like you are a brand new person.
These tips are essential for making sure that you get the most out of your workout and set yourself up for a proper recovery. By following these tips and tricks, you will feel ready for your next workout, and you will get the most out of every session. Give these a try and watch the magic happen!
*Disclaimer: This article provides general information about medicine, health, and related subjects. The words and other content provided in this article, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed physician or other health care worker.