When it comes to fitness, people often suffer two things: getting exhausted and experiencing pain. Getting tired is definitely inevitable. It is actually part of becoming stronger. What is difficult is when you suffer muscle pains and joint pains. This is one of the basic reasons why we tend to stop from working out and find it difficult to go back to fitness life again. Dealing with muscle and joint pains are part of keeping yourself fit and enjoying fitness life. So if you are already suffering right now, just hold on a little bit and read through to help yourself out.
It’s normal to have sore muscles after you work out, play sports, or even do housework, especially if: You did an activity you’re not used to (like running a marathon when you normally jog just a few miles). You suddenly kicked up your exercise intensity level or increased the length of your workout. You did eccentric exercises, in which you lengthened instead of shortened your muscle (like walking downhill or extending your arm during a bicep curl. When your joints feel sore and achy, that’s usually a sign of osteoarthritis. This inflammatory condition becomes more common as you get older. The cartilage that normally cushions the joints wears away, leaving the joints inflamed and painful. Joint pain can also be caused by overuse or injury; for example, tennis elbow or a knee injury caused by a ligament or meniscal problem.
For muscle pains, you have to wait until such time your muscles get used to the intensity of workout. However, you should not totally stop working out until the pain is gone. You have to relief yourself and the normal question would be to use heat or ice. The key is that, ice is good for immediate relief. Right after workout, applying ice would elevate inflammation but will not really cure the pain. As the muscle cools, it would be better to apply heat (hot compress) to be able to allow blood flow to the muscles which is good for muscle tissue repairs. Pain relievers can also work if you feel pain once in a while. Sometimes soothing sore muscles requires more than an ice pack or over-the-counter pain reliever. Muscle pain that comes on quickly and feels intense is a sign that you’ve injured yourself. Call your doctor if your pain is severe or lasts for more than a few days.
Prevention is always far better than cure. That is, it is always better to avoid having pains rather than elevating it. Experts used to recommend stretching before a workout to prevent sore muscles. Yet research has shown that stretching ahead of time doesn’t do much to prevent soreness or injury. It is actually better to do stretching after a good warm-up as your muscles need to be warm before stretching them. A couple of natural substances have been touted for preventing sore muscles, including antioxidants like vitamin C. But check with your doctor before taking high doses of any vitamin. Serious exercisers might find relief from post-workout soreness by beefing up on protein. A study of marines found that taking protein supplements reduced sore muscles after intense exercise. Lastly, you can always check with your doctor before you begin any workout or exercises to be sure if you are fit enough and up to what intensity your workout should be.