Muscle stress. 4 Tips for relieving strained muscles
Are you one of the 52.5% of people who play sports at least once a week? This will interest you. Or are you in the remaining 47.5% who don't play any sports? Then maybe this will make you change your mind...
Whichever group you fall into, let's talk about muscle stress. That's the feeling of tightness, rigidity or heaviness in the muscles that usually triggers a certain fatigue, discomfort or tiredness. Have you ever felt it? Below, we explain why this happens and how you can quickly improve that feeling of strained muscles. Stay if you want to find out!
Do you play sports to de-stress? Muscles also get stressed...
During exercise, the muscles experience stress due to the tension, contraction and load imposed when performing certain movements, and micro-injuries can even occur in the muscle fibre. But don't panic!
How does this happen? Our body is wise and, in this situation, (which is totally normal and beneficial, by the way) it activates a process of repair and adaptation, and inflammation is part of that response. The immune system releases inflammatory cells, like leukocytes and cytokines, to aid in the repair of damaged tissues and, in turn, remove waste.
Although it sounds contradictory, this inflammation actually benefits muscle recovery and adaptation in the short term. But... here comes the "but"... this inflammation is usually uncomfortable for us, resulting in the sensation of tightness, rigidity or muscle heaviness.
Well, now that you know what produces that sensation and that it's actually your body's natural response and beneficial to the development of our muscles, you're probably thinking: "Great, but... how can I reduce the discomfort in my muscles?" We'll get to that...
But there's more... in addition to that muscular stress, our body experiences another series of changes when we play sports. Let's pause for a moment to remember thatthe benefits of exercising and playing sports far outnumber the benefits of not doing so. Let's be clear about that. We simply need to be aware of what goes on inside our bodies to understand why we pick up certain niggles, and how we can reduce or improve them.
Oxidative stress and mineral loss during exercise...
When you play sports or exercise, especially at high intensity, oxygen consumption increases, which means an increase in the generation of ROS in the body (mainly in the muscles). What does that mean? Free radicals show up and oxidise cells, triggering oxidative stress. But relax...because there's also a solution!
The solution? Antioxidants, which are responsible for neutralising free radicals. And you can get them through food and even cosmetics.
So what else usually happens when you play sports? You sweat... right? Therefore, you eliminate minerals like calcium, sodium and magnesium through sweating, which affects the electrolyte balance of the body, and in turn muscle function, hydration and performance. Therefore, it's important to find a way to compensate for this loss of minerals.
But we must not forget that exercising helps us increase muscle tone, lose weight, improve the cardiovascular system, increase energy metabolism and antioxidant defences, and increase strength and endurance, among many other things.
Let's return now to your previous question: "Great, but... how can I reduce the discomfort in my muscles?" It's time to find out...
4 Tips to relieve strained muscles and reduce muscle stress easily
Train, stretch, eat and sleep, this should be your mantra. Food, the balance between muscle stress and recovery, i.e., rest, and of course stretching, are key factors in ensuring that muscle discomfort is significantly reduced. But you can also find a very good reinforcement in natural cosmetics. Let's take a look at all of this:
1- Food. Discover the power of sour cherry
Certain foods can help your body regenerate muscles after a workout. What are they? Foods rich in protein, antioxidants and minerals like calcium, magnesium and sodium. And where can I find them? In green leafy vegetables, red fruits and eggs.
There's a study from the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, conducted with triathletes, runners and cyclists, on the benefits of sour cherry for muscle recovery. The study shows that inflammation, damage, and muscle soreness are reduced after training. Nor can we forget that cherries are veryyyyy rich in antioxidants. They have it all!
2- Stretching Are you one of those people who knows how important it is to stretch, but runs without stretching anyway? YES, I AM
Even if it sounds like a "cliché," it's true. After exercising it's very important to stretch to help our muscles relax and recover. Likewise, you shouldn't start playing sports without warming up first.
Don't skip this step. To put it simply, it's like going to bed without doing your nighttime facial cleansing routine. A complete no-no!
3- Rest. Don't forget, sleeping and rest are part of your exercise routine
Your body needs to sleep to make a full recovery. So, if you want your muscles to recover faster: get as much sleep as you can. If you're someone who thinks that while you're sleeping, you're wasting time, We're sorry to say it's a MISTAKE. You're actually improving your recovery and athletic performance. You should sleep between 7-8 hours a day, but if you can't, you can take advantage of naps and weekends to catch up on those hours of sleep.
4- Cosmetic reinforcement. The secret to faster muscle recovery starts with your skin
Your muscles need a boost for their recovery! Relieve muscle fatigue after physical exercise with a massage and enhance the benefits of that massage by applying a product specifically designed for that purpose. In other words, a natural muscle recovery product that combines anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antioxidant ingredients. And if it also helps compensate for the loss of minerals, it's an added bonus
Spend about 15/20 minutes massaging the areas of your body that you worked on the most during your workout. By the way, you don't need to do the massage right after training. You can do it after the shower or before going to sleep. Tip! You can use your own hands with some pressure, or even a tennis ball.
Reminder! These kinds of cosmetic products and massages should never replace stretching, proper nutrition, or rest. The combination of these 4 tips is the key to relieving muscle stress and, therefore, that feeling of strained muscles. No more, no less!
Do you suddenly feel the need to get a muscle-recovery product? Click here
Freshly wants to tell you something! At Freshly we keep on learning every day how to make decisions that bring us closer to a better future. Sometimes we are called dreamers, but what we really have is an optimistic vision and clear path for reaching that tomorrow.
Would you like to join this adventure? If you're here, it's because you are a demanding person when it comes to taking care of your body and the planet. By subscribing to the newsletteryou will receive articles like this one to continue learning, as well as news and exclusive discounts. Are you up for it?
Tell us what you think!