How many times have you gone home from a class, the gym or a long walk and slumped on the sofa, barely moving until absolutely necessary? Yes, I have too - and I feel it the next day. So the final piece of the post-work-out puzzle is to keep moving. Once you have had something to eat, kept hydrated and warm, now one of the best things to do is to stay mobile. You may feel tired, but hopefully it's 'good' tired, perhaps even with some added endorphins, so you might be feeling pretty well. Make the most of it and wander around, practise a move or routine that you perhaps hadn't mastered in class, or even just have a shower. It helps your muscles to stay warm and helps the blood to keep flowing, rather than pooling. You body will thank you for it for the next few days!
Next week, I'm moving the focus away from exercise and on to mental well-being, with a very exciting accompanying opportunity! Here's a photo to whet your appetite...
Yes, G&T/vodka, etc. may look like water... Thanks again for all your helpful suggestions after last week's blog on drinking after exercising!
On to Part 3, which is all about keeping warm. It may feel a bit weird to be writing about this when it's the warmest it's been for ages, but it's really important now and especially when it's colder. The main reason to stay warm after exercise is to stop muscles from seizing up. After you've gone to the trouble of stretching after exercise (to get your muscles back to their pre-exercise length), you may as well keep them warm too, as they are less likely to get stiff. Research suggests that the lactic acid that accumulates in the muscles during exercise can be more easily dispersed when you stay warm afterwards.
So warm down slowly and make sure you are wearing enough clothes too. This will really help the day(s) after exercising too, as you will find that you can move more easily and freely.
(P.S. No blog next week as I'm away. I'll be back for the final instalment of this series on 22nd June.)
Here's what a bit of warmth and water has produced in my garden - another lovely peony!
Thanks for all your comments last week about what you like to eat after exercise. I guess I should have expected the chocolate, crisps and wine ideas...!
Anyway, this week is all about staying hydrated. In my fitness classes, I encourage a drink after every track, so usually about every 4 minutes. Just a sip is fine, as gulping down lots of water in one go can feel bloating and sloshy. Topping up on water stops you being dehydrated, which can affect your energy levels. Your muscle cells are almost three-quarters water so if you're short on fluids, things can feel more difficult. The amount you need to drink will depend on how much you sweat and how long you exercise for. The best way to figure out how much to drink is to respond to what your body tells you. Simply put, if you feel thirsty, drink.
After a workout, your body will be ready for a drink as this will be refreshing and it will also restore your fluid levels and help your muscles to recover. The sooner you start to replace the fluid, the sooner you’ll recover. Water is great and as I mentioned last week, chocolate milk can work too. (The aim is to keep it non-alcoholic, obviously! Which reminds me, I heard a great new word recently: 'soberista', to describe being a non-drinker, rather than tee-totaller. Like it!)
Hi, I'm Joanna from Clean Well-Being.
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Clean Well-being blog