So you got yourself to the gym (nice work!) but now you’re feeling the pain from an intense workout. We’ve all been there, and while it’s nice to be sore (means you pushed your body harder/faster/stronger than your normal workout), it can literally be a pain in the butt. Here are some tips for optimal recovery.

Prior to workout:

  • Coffee – studies show a cup of joe before working out can help reduce muscle soreness and fatigue by nearly half (not to mention boosting endurance!)

coffeePhoto: Cesar Silva @watchmehussle

  • Hydrate – this one is important for before, during and after your workout
  • Warm up and gentle stretches before you began any strenuous running or lifting

Immediately after workout:

  • Always end your workout with at least 5 minutes of stretching to lengthen the muscles you just worked
  • ICE for 10-15 minutes to take down inflammation (ice bath is ideal, but ice packs will do just fine)
  • Add tart cherry juice to your recovery drink

cherry-juice-400x400Tart cherry juice is filled with antioxidants called anthocyanins, which help with soreness by decreasing inflammation

That night:

  • Epsom salt bath – the magnesium in Epsom salt flushes toxins & heavy metals from the cells, easing muscle pain

salt-bath-epsomTry adding lavender essential oils for relaxing benefits

  • Foam roller (looks kind of like falling off a log)- uses pressure and targeted massage to help prevent scarring of the connective tissue between your muscles as well as reduction of cellulite if you use regularly!

Photos: Cesar Silva

  • Massage any areas that feel stiff – increasing blood flow to those areas

After 24 hours:

  • Self-massage Stick (or a foam roller) – absolutely LOVE the muscle roller stick
  • While it’s important to get proper rest, it’s likely an easy walk or light stretching within 48 hours of your initial workout will help relieve muscle soreness by releasing lactic acid build-up (what causes that sore feeling)

vedix yoga vedix yoga 2Simple yoga poses such as Ragdoll and Prasarita (wide legged forward fold) are great ways to stretch your hamstrings, groins and spine. | Photos: Cesar Silva | Yogi: Alexa Ibarra

What’s your favorite sore muscle relief secret?