There are many different issues — such as weight control, mood management, and stabilizing mobility — for which exercise is one of the solutions prescribed. One of the consequences of exercising, particularly at a vigorous rate, is soreness the next day. Here are some tips as to what you can do to help your loved one feel the best they can after exercising and keep them motivated to do it again:
There are a number of benefits to stretching, particularly if you remain in control throughout the stretch. In addition to maintaining or increasing flexibility, stretching after a workout helps the muscles cool down at a more gradual rate and increases blood flow to remove free radicals. Contact your loved one’s doctor to see what stretches he or she recommends, as everyone has different needs when it comes to exercise and stretching.
Have a good diet going in
One’s ability to persist in exercise as well as how he or she will feel afterward depends largely on what that person has been eating beforehand. If the body has a good balance of nutrition, the stores of glycogen (what your body makes out of carbohydrates) will act as the predominant source of energy. This helps keep muscle proteins intact, and thus helps the body stay stronger and more capable of exercising longer.
Refuel with nutritious foods
In addition to repairing muscle, restoring glycogen, and altering blood-sugar levels, what you eat after a workout can greatly alter how sore you feel. Foods that are high in vitamins C and E, potassium, and other antioxidants will help reduce muscle fatigue greatly. Foods such as berries, citrus fruits, tart cherries, nuts, green leafy vegetables, whole grains, and tomatoes are all good choices for after exercise nutrition. Try to make sure that you or your loved one is getting some protein and a little fat as part of the recovery nutrition. Nuts and whole-fat yogurt are good sources for both of those.
One of the easiest ways to get a good balance of these foods is to make a smoothie. Below is a recipe to try. Feel free to adjust to your tastes, but try to substitute sugary parts with sugary parts, proteins with proteins, etc.
Green, Blue, and Red Smoothie
Makes 1 large smoothie
1 cup water
1 cup leafy greens (salad mix is fine)
½ cup yogurt (whole-fat greek)
½ cup frozen blueberries
½ cup frozen cherries
1 Tbsp melted coconut oil
1. Add to blender all ingredients (except for oil) in the following order: water, leafy greens, yogurt, blueberries, and cherries.
2. Blend until smooth, adding additional water as needed.
3. Add coconut oil and blend.
Check out the following links for additional tips on how to keep muscle soreness down: