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How to Get Relief After a Painful Workout


Whether a person is a weekend warrior or a professional athlete, chances are sometimes they will get sore from exercising. The pain may start about an hour after exercising and may last 48 hours. The most common cause of your pain is that lactic acid that normally occurs at the muscle site combined with the muscular micro-tears that occur in the process of breaking down and building back muscle fibers.

The technical term for the discomfort one might feel following a session of exercise is DOMS,  or delayed onset muscle soreness.  If experiences of intense pain that doesn’t go away after a couple of days, they need to seek professional medical help.

Here are things someone can do to ease the discomfort:

  • REST - Take a couple of days of for muscles to repair usually 48 hours. If a person is frequently working their muscles, the muscles never get time to repair.
  • ICE -  Ice can relieve some pain because it numbs the area and reduces any swelling. Limit icing to 20 minutes or less, depending on the amount of surface area involved. 
  • HEAT - Heat can be applied gradually to relieve pain and increase blood flow to an area. Never apply a heating pad directly to the skin or fall asleep on a heating pad as this can cause burns.
  • CIRCULATING HEAT - Warm baths, warm towels, and gentle massage all increase the blood flow to an area.
  • STRETCHING -  The squeezing out of lactic acid from your muscles with gentle stretching or massage helps muscles recover. This action is assisted by drinking more water to flush the waste products out and help liver processes.
  • ANALGESICS - These reduce pain and swelling quicker, but should only be taken as needed, and should not be relied upon for common relief.
  • WARM UP - Always warm up before an activity, and cool down afterwards to lessen the overall post-exercise DOMS. 

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