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How to Relieve Sore Muscles the Morning After

3 Ways to Ease Soreness in the Morning

Whether you ran a little farther than normal or took that two-hour Zumba class your friend talked you into, you're definitely still feeling it in the morning. A little soreness lets you know you had a good workout, but it's not such a great feeling when you're so sore it hurts to walk down the stairs. Here are three ways to alleviate the uncomfortable achiness the morning after an intense workout.

  1. Shower power: The power of heat is a sore muscle's best friend. Either hop in a hot shower, soak in a steamy bath, or hit your gym's sauna. If a particular area is sore, like your lower back, plug in a heating pad or use a microwaveable warming pillow and get some relief by placing it on the affected area.
  2. Move and stretch: Post-workout muscle stiffness can be relieved, surprisingly, by more exercise. Do some light cardio like walking to improve circulation, and get even more relief by following up with a short stretching session — lengthening overworked muscles does wonders for your achy body. Do any of the stretching sequences below depending on which part of your body is hurting:
    Lower-back and hip stretches
    Hamstring stretches
    Ab stretches
    Quad stretches
    Chest and shoulder stretches
    Calf stretches
  3. Get a massage: If you know you're going to be doing a pretty rigorous workout, set up a massage for the morning after. Getting a good rubdown is sure to offer instant relief from pain and stiffness, and it can help shorten the amount of time you feel sore. If you can't afford a massage, make time with your gym's foam roller.
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