Top Tips For Muscle Recovery After A Workout

Woman resting and drinking from bottle after a workout

- Cloud Massage Brand Team

It’s officially a new year and we all know what that means. New workout plans. New pains. Hopefully new gains. However, it can also lead to the yearly sour joke of how long we can continue these “new year’s resolutions” before we head back to our normal routine. 

Don’t let the pain of heading back into the gym keep you from reaching your workout goals. Whether it’s packing on some muscle or becoming toned and fit, remember that muscle recovery after a workout is just as important as the warm up and workout itself. 

From massage guns to shiatsu foot massagers to a simple tennis ball, here are some great cooldown tips for your muscle recovery after a workout. 

Tips For Muscle Recovery After Your Workout

When it comes to muscle recovery, one of your first thoughts might be massaging or relaxing. There are actually multiple ways you can help your muscles recover after a workout – and you might be doing some already without realizing it. Here are some great ways you can support those hard working muscles after a trip to the gym:

Eat Healthy Food 

It’s actually really healthy to eat a snack within 45 minutes after your workout as it helps give your muscles energy that can aid in muscle recovery. Choose healthy carbs and high-quality protein in the forms of yogurt, eggs, cheese, lean meats, fish, and whey protein. Healthy carbs like sweet potatoes, fresh fruit, oatmeal, and legumes can also be a great aid. Be sure to keep an eye out on the sugar amount in protein powders and bars. Sometimes they can be chock-full of sugar which is the opposite of what we want to eat so our muscles can continue to get strong and healthy. Focus on boosting your metabolism and you’ll be able to hit your workout goals and muscle recovery after workout plans in no time. 

Get A Good Night’s Rest 

It may not seem like it, but sleep is actually vital in the repair process of your muscles. As you place stress on your muscles from working out, running, and other activities, athletes and those who work out need more sleep than those who workout less or not at all. More muscle stress means more sleep. 

Drink Lots of Water 

Staying hydrated is vital in muscle recovery and can result in cramps if you don’t drink enough water. If you live in a climate that is especially hot and humid, not drinking water after you work out can result in dehydration. Other drinks like milk can aid in obtaining more protein while chocolate milk can be a good carb. Tart cherry juice can also be of use as it can help reduce inflammation and address muscle damage and soreness from your workout routine. 

Grab Those Supplements 

When you think you need more vitamins and minerals than you can consume through food and drinks, turn towards a supplement. Those like protein powder and creatine can help support your muscle growth. Please note that this growth does not necessarily mean you will get bulky muscles like bodybuilders – you need steroids to achieve this – but it can help you become more toned and lean. 

Stretch, Shower, or Soak 

Relaxation besides sleep is a great way for your muscles to recover. Take a cool or cold shower, an ice bath, or use Epsom salt. Taking some time to stretch while you're still warm can relieve tension while working on your flexibility. 

Massaging Sore Muscles After A Tiresome Workout

This might come as a surprise to no one, but massaging is a great way to help your body recover after a long workout, jog, and other forms of exercise. It may not seem like it as you massage – sometimes it can just hurt if your body is super tense – but focusing specifically on certain areas of your body can help in their post-workout recovery. 

There are so many different types of massages out there as well depending on what you need out of it. Here are a couple of examples to look into for your muscle recovery after a workout:

Hot Stone Massage 

It’s called hot stone massage because hot stones replace a masseuse’s hands in the massage process. This massage helps relieve tension and promotes relaxation. Cold stones can also be used alongside the hot ones to promote muscle recovery. 

Deep Tissue Massage 

Swedish massage is the gentle one that helps relieve knots, while deep tissue massage uses more pressure on the body. This massage is helpful for those with chronic pain, and while it can be more intense than a Swedish massage, you shouldn’t feel pain. It should bring relief to your muscles in the days after.

Shiatsu Massage

If you really want a massage that is relaxing that helps with minor tension, turn to the Japanese-style Shiatsu massage. This type of massage has been known to help with stress and even anxiety and depression. Focus on a specific area of your body or its entirety – whichever you need. 

Too Long; Didn’t Read: Is it good to massage sore muscles after working out? 

Yes, it is very good to have a massage after a workout. If you don’t want to pay for a massage, however, you can totally massage your own body or ask a friend or family member to assist in your massage needs. 

Best Massage Machines For Muscle Recovery

You can also turn to a massage machine for your muscle recovery needs. Massage guns and other machines are great if you want to focus on certain areas of your body or if you can’t reach a specific spot with just your hands. Here are a couple we recommend: 

  • Premium Percussion Massage Gun by Vybe: If you want more pressure and focus than just what your hands – or friend’s or family member’s hands – can accomplish with an at-home or at-the-gym massage, turn towards a reliable massage gun. This Premium Percussion Massage Gun by Vybe has five levels of intensity and four different massage heads. Focus along your neck, spine, hamstrings, joints, and so much more with this portable-yet-powerful massage gun. 
  • Shiatsu Foot & Leg Massager Machine by Cloud Massage: Feet and legs giving you some post-workout pain? Reach for this Shiatsu Foot & Leg Massager Machine by Cloud Massage. Runners, walkers, and athletes alike love how this machine gives you three levels of intensity, a heat option, and can be adjusted to be used on your feet or legs. Now you can have the relaxing time of a Shiatsu massage at home. 

Final Thoughts on Muscle Recovery 

Muscle recovery after a workout is no joke, but you might already be succeeding in ways – like eating healthy foods and drinking water – to replenish your body with care and nutrients. Massaging can also lead to an increase of flexibility and relief. Whether you head to the masseuse or turn to a massage gun, your body will appreciate the time and focus nonetheless. Take your self-care to the next level with a massage and see how your new year’s resolutions can become year-round habits. 

Contributing Writer: Marena Galluccio