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Use the Sauna to Relieve Sore Muscles

Learn to Love: The Sauna

Regardless of what gym I've belonged to, it feels like I am the only person that ever uses the sauna. Since I've been working out, there's only been one other time that I haven't been in there alone. I'm not sure if I'm hitting the gym at odd times or if folks are just not feeling the sauna as much as I do. It could be that they are afraid of their bits and pieces showing, a la Charlotte from Sex in the City.

If you are one of those who has an aversion to the sauna, give it a try the next time you're there. Because I've been bumping up my strength training sessions lately, I've been loving the sauna even more. The heat helps relax the muscles I've just worked and also helps alleviate some of the stiffness in my joints. I've even done a sauna before yoga because it helps my body get warm, loose, and flexible. It also feels marvelous after a hard swimming session.

Besides helping my body relax, saunas are a great way to open up the pores and sweat. Sounds gross, but sweating is the body's way of eliminating toxins and other impurities — taking regular saunas may even cut back on the number of colds and flu viruses you have.

If you do try the sauna and find that yours is more crowded than mine, remember to practice sauna etiquette: rinse off before entering to reduce odor and the spread of germs, have quiet conversations, and always sit on a towel. Most importantly, stay hydrated! Since the heat can be quite dehydrating, I always drink water before and after the sauna.

Do you love the sauna?

Source: Flickr User MiikaS

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Join The Conversation
lighthouselady lighthouselady 6 years
I really liked using when I had access to one. Now I don't.
cotedazur cotedazur 6 years
I try to avoid saunas because they can cause spider veins....
gidgie gidgie 6 years
I'm all about the steam room!
Allytta Allytta 6 years
saunas are not hot guys, have you been to a russian bania? that's hot :)
Allytta Allytta 6 years
i adore sauna! love love love. and here in UK it's unisex and always full of pervie guys. back home it was two rooms according to your sex so everyone can relax
jkat jkat 6 years
It's funny you mention the sauna after swimming. When I was little, during very cold Saturday morning swim practices at the Y, one of my friends or I would "go to the bathroom" towards the end of practice to turn the sauna on. We would have put all of our clothes and bags in the sauna instead of the lockers so we could run in there after practice was over to change. We were so warm and toasty! These days I prefer steam to sauna, but I still like a nice sauna every now and then.
brownsugamama brownsugamama 6 years
Love it! I work out at home now, but when I had a membership the sauna was a real treat.
Spectra Spectra 6 years
I love the sauna! I like the feeling of being super warm and sweating out all the toxins in your body. It always makes me feel refreshed when I get out.
staple-salad staple-salad 6 years
I love the sauna! The only reason I'm not using one after workouts is because my gym doesn't have one. So I just take a steamy shower instead and hope I get some sweating done, lol.
Asche Asche 6 years
I love saunas, but the one in my gym is mixed and almost always full. As much as I love to sit in there, I get sick of all the wrinkly naked old men :)
funkygeorge funkygeorge 6 years
I actually have trouble breathing in saunas because of the heat and moisture. I should probably never move to Florida.
susiejerez susiejerez 6 years
I'm in the sauna 6-7 days a week! Now that the weather is cold, the idea of heading to the gym is less appealing so I close my eyes and picture myself relaxing in the sauna and it does the trick every time. I'll be dressed and headed to the gym in less than five minutes. If you find yourself in there alone or with one other person, try slowly stretching and you'll notice how fast you'll increase flexibility within a couple of days. I stay in for just a couple minutes and it gives me a gorgeous glow that makes me feel comfortable working out in front of those hot personal trainers :)
mamasitamalita mamasitamalita 6 years
I LOVE the sauna. since in the winter sometimes I feel it can be a little drying, I'll hit the steam room for a few minutes after I'm done in the sauna.
runningesq runningesq 6 years
I don't like it --- I've tried it a couple times but I get too hot and too bored !
benheld benheld 6 years
I get a massage at a woman's spa about 4 - 6 times a year--I love using their steam rooms and sauna!! If I belonged to a gym with a sauna, I'd probably use it pretty regularly.
runswimmerrun runswimmerrun 6 years
Yes I do like the sauna, but I usually don't use it as a time issue. If I can afford the time at the gym to sit in the sauna, I'd rather be working out! :)
kclulu kclulu 6 years
I think I sweat out all of my toxins while I am workng out. I just can't enjoy sitting in a steaming hot room after a steaming hot workout. I have tried it in the past and I am bored, restless and uncomfortable. This might why I am also adverse to meditation, I just prefer being active since I sit at a desk all day.
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