How To Get Rid Of Muscle Sores: 3 Quick Ways To Feel Relief
Do you often experience some soreness on your muscles right after a heavy workout? If yes, then it's just right you're reading this article as I'll teach you how to get rid of muscle aches fast and effectively today. The soreness that you feel comes from the inflammatory chemicals released when your body is put under so much strain from regular workouts.
I, too, experience muscle aches often. Since I didn’t want to disrupt my regular workout schedule, I searched online for some cool simple home remedies. If you're dying to treat your muscle aches, you’re going to want to take notes and keep reading!
What You’ll Need to Get Started
For Solution 1- RICE Method
You need an ice pack to apply to the sore area because the cold can help minimize pain and inflammation. If you like to keep the ice pack securely in place, find something that has a velcro strap. To save on cash, find a reusable ice pack so you can chill it in the refrigerator to get it ready for the next time you'll need it.
Ice Cubes + Resealable Bag
A great alternative to an ice pack is a combination of ice cubes and a resealable bag. Just place several ice cubes into the resealable bag and seal it. If you have no resealable bag, use a towel instead.
Bag Of Frozen Vegetables
A bag of frozen vegetables is another great ice pack alternative to alleviate pain from your strained muscles. When you have the frozen bag, make sure that it’s completely sealed, so you don’t spill it. I prefer this alternative more to ice cubes because it conforms to the shape of your ankle or leg perfectly.
The compression bandage is greatly needed to fulfill the letter C in the RICE method, which is compression. This bandage will help minimize the swelling of the sore muscle. You can find some high-quality bandages in your local drugstores. If you have sensitive skin, look for latex-free bandages.
Elevate the sore area by resting it on a pile of pillows. Doing this will help decrease the swelling of your strained muscle. Pile up pillows so that the sore area is higher than the heart level when you're lying down.
For Solution 2- Heat Pack Method
Apply a heating pad on the affected area to help speed up the healing process. Blood flow will then increase, and muscles will start to relax. However, this mustn’t be applied before the cold packs because the heat may worsen the swelling. You can purchase heat pads at your nearest drugstores.
Most heat pads can be warmed in the microwave. Some are even designed with an UltraHeat Technology to reach the highest temperature and keep a constant heat for optimum relief.
Warm water + Washcloth
If you don’t like to spend a dime, you can run the washcloth over warm water. This will still give you the same heat that a heating pad offers. However, this alternative may need some extra effort in constantly wetting the washcloth with warm water and wringing it to remove excess water.
Damp Sock + Uncooked Rice
Another alternative to heat pads is to make your own rice sock which can even penetrate into the muscle more effectively. To make, get an old sock and fill it with uncooked rice. You can also use flax seeds because they heat longer than rice.
Don’t pack the rice tightly into the sock, instead leave a bit of room for the rice to move around freely so it conforms easily to the sore area. Next, tie the sock with a string or yarn to prevent the grains from spilling out.
For Solution 3- Pepper Ointment
According to Dr. Oz, the capsaicin found in peppers can help numb muscle soreness. In fact, this heating component is even integrated into some creams for treating minor pains and aches.
For the pepper ointment concoction, you can use any regular hot sauce created from chili pepper, cayenne pepper, and red pepper. The typical Tabasco sauce even works in this concoction.
For a great moisturizing effect, mix coconut oil with the hot sauce. You’ll want the oil to be chilled to provide a thicker consistency, not a watery mess. The thicker consistency also makes the application a lot easy on the skin.
To serve as the container for your pepper ointment, you’ll need any storage jar available. Whether plastic or glass, it’s okay as long as the size fits the amount of your ointment. If you don’t want to spend anything, use any empty containers you have at home as long as there is a lid.
Step-by-Step Guide on How to Get Rid of Muscle Sores
Solution 1 - RICE Method
The RICE acronym stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. RICE is a first-aid tool utilized to treat muscle aches. It’s especially good in alleviating the pain and helping with muscle recovery. You can use this method right after you have a muscle strain.
If you feel any muscle strain, the first thing you need to do is to rest. Take the weight off the sore area by resting the sore muscle. Take a break from any regular activities and workouts. There will be no strenuous movements allowed.
2. Ice The Sore Area
Once the soreness is felt, apply the ice pack to the affected area immediately. Alternatively, you can use a bag of frozen vegetables and ice cubes packed in a resealable bag. Let the ice pack or any cold pack rest in the sore area for about 10-20 minutes, at least three times daily.
3. Compress The Strained Muscle
After the icing is done, wrap the sore area with a compression bandage to reduce swelling. If you have a history of blood clots, check your doctor before you use a compression bandage. Never wrap the sore area too tight because it may worsen the swelling gravely.
You can tell that your bandage is too tight if the sore area feels numb and tingling. If you feel any of these signs, loosen the bandage a bit.
4. Elevate The Sore Area
While applying the ice pack, don’t forget to elevate the sore area on a pile of pillows. The height of the elevation should be above your heart level to help reduce the swelling effectively.
Solution 2 - Heat Pack Method
If the swelling has gone after 2-3 days but you still feel sore in your muscles, perform the heat pack method. The heat will help relax the sore and tightened muscles and promote better blood circulation. It’s never advisable to apply heat before the cold therapy because it tends to worsen the swelling condition.
1. Microwave The Heating Pad
If you’re using a heating pad, microwave at full power for prescribed time. For those who want to use a washcloth, let it run over a warm water or you can wet it and microwave as you would a heating pad. If you’re using a rice sock, microwave it for about 1-3 minutes.
2. Apply To The Sore Area
After the heating pad, wet washcloth or rice sock is heated, apply it to the sore area. You can leave the heating pad for about 20 minutes, three times a day. If you’re using a heating pad, make sure you don't doze off or you put yourself at risk for burns.
Solution 3 - Pepper Ointment
You can use a pepper ointment if you're not accustomed to using stinky rubs. The capsaicin in peppers helps numb the pain of your muscles while the coconut oil moisturizes your skin.
1. Mix Hot Sauce And Coconut Oil
Before you mix the two ingredients, chill the coconut oil to produce a thicker consistency. For this ointment recipe, you need about two tablespoons of hot sauce and 1/2 cup chilled coconut oil. In a storage container, mix the two ingredients into a paste.
2. Apply Liberally To Sore Muscles
Once the mix has turned into a paste, apply it liberally to sore areas. Give a light massage on the affected area so the ointment absorbs deep into the skin. Remember to wash your hands after using so it won’t rub on your eyes or face accidentally. Keep the remaining ointment in the fridge.
Surprising Tips From The Experts!
1. Take Ibuprofen
If you like a quick relief from muscle soreness, Men’s Fitness suggests taking some Ibuprofen. This over-the-counter medicine is known to reduce muscle pains. When your muscles are in a recovery state, try to do some gentle stretching exercises to help alleviate the tight feeling of your muscles.
2. Train Through The Pain
Interestingly, Body Building suggests training through the soreness as the pain quickly vanishes once your body adapts. Of course, you don’t want to put yourself at more risk to injuries, so it’s best to reduce training load and volume to make up for the increased frequency.
Did you enjoy reading through the instructions of how to reduce muscle soreness after a strenuous workout? Thanks to these three solutions - RICE, heating pad, and pepper ointment, I can already reduce the swelling and make the healing process quicker. And the interesting tips from the experts are quite something too, right?
If you have questions or suggestions about this article, let us know in the comments section. And please don’t forget to share this article if you liked it!