Losing weight and gaining muscle is not just about working out. Your warming up and cooling down sessions, and your daily meals are also factors that are directly affecting your fitness results.
We all know that working out is an essential part of staying fit and healthy. But, there are parts which, sadly, only make us weaker if we don’t address them as soon as possible.
What on earth does this mean? It means that exercising is almost pointless without cooling down, and so many people don’t take the time to cool down.
Simply put, anyone that doesn’t take on extra oxygen or stretch is at risk of an injury. And, the wrong one can set you back months.
Cooling Down After A Workout
To avoid any health related issues, you need to start cooling down, and here’s how to do it:
1. Continue Moving
The worst thing you can do is to stop running altogether. The reason is simple: it is traumatic.
When the body is working at full capacity, it is a massive shock to drop off suddenly. So, blood pooling and a drop in your blood pressure are not uncommon. The trick is to slowly reduce your output back to normal by continuing to exercise but at a lower level.
For example, walking instead of running is a great example. If you’re on the treadmill, just reduce the rate and slowly jog or walk for five minutes.
A common myth is that stretching reduces the chances of an injury. In truth, there is no evidence to show that to be the case.
What does exist is evidence that stretching lowers the amount of soreness for the next day. There is nothing worse than waking up and feeling as stiff as a board.
Not only does it make the small things difficult, but it can compromise your training plan. But by stretching directly after exercise, when the muscles are at their most flexible, the soreness should relent.
Remember to hold the position for up to thirty seconds for the optimum results.
3. See A Doctor
Do you only visit a doctor when there is something wrong? Well, you need to change your attitude. Although you probably don’t know it, a sports doctor is an effective tool for cooling down.
Okay, they won’t run you through the process like a physician in the movies. But they will tell you whether your current plan is working or needs tweaking. And, they can also provide information on how to make your cooling down process even more effective.
Let’s face it – you don’t know more than a medical professional.
4. Take On Nutrients
The final part of a cool down is to replace the nutrients you lose during exercise.
When you workout, the body has to use a lot of energy to ensure you hit peak levels of performance. Clearly, this takes a lot of effort, and it can leave the body spent afterward.
By drinking water and protein shakes, and eating a balanced meal, the entire body will benefit.
Oh, and do you know the earlier bit about soreness? Well, taking on nutrients prevents the onset of DOMS, something you want to avoid wherever possible.
Please don’t make the same mistake over and over because it will only harm your well-being. And never ever skip your cooling down!