Think about the last time you went to the gym or went for a run. Or when you did some home workouts to strengthen your core. Did you stretch after these workouts or did you just go along with your day as normal? If you’re like most people, then you probably didn’t stretch after your workout. And because of that, you were probably feeling pretty sore and stiff the day after. It’s super important to stretch after working out to keep your ligaments and tendons strong and to help alleviate soreness the next day. Make sure that you consult with your doctor if you’re feeling any unusual pain, which could be a symptom of a more serious injury.
As we age, our tendons and ligaments shorten and their flexibility decreases. That’s just a natural part of the aging process that we all have to go through. However, by stretching after your workouts or by taking up practices like yoga, we can keep our tendons, ligaments, and muscles flexible. And that’s not only going to help you with your stretches! You’re going to see less chance of injuries when you pay attention to your ligaments and you’ll find it easier to get around as you age.
How can you alleviate the pain? If you’re dealing with muscle, tendon, or ligament pain at the moment, then there are multiple ways to alleviate that pain. Of course, the first way has already been mentioned - stretching. Make sure to slot at least 10 minutes of stretch time after every single workout you do - no matter whether it’s just a run in the park or a more intense core exercise in the gym. Look up various stretches you can do online based on the type of exercise you did. The pain you experience from sore or stiff ligaments can be diminished by using a hot and cold therapy ice pack. These packs are often the most effective way to quickly get rid of the pain you’re having and remove any discomfort. Heat/cold muscle therapy works by soothing stiffness and relaxing your muscles with heat, while using the cold to numb pain and reduce inflammation of the joints.
The next way to alleviate pain is with a muscle foam roll. You may have seen these pieces of foam in the gym or sporting goods store, but never knew what they’re used for. Foam rolling is a type of self-myofascial release in which pressure is applied to certain body party to relieve pain. Target major muscle groups and roll a minimum of five times to stretch out your ligaments and tendons. If you have especially sore spots, you can give those a couple of extra rolls. By doing this, you are directly stretching out and increasing the flexibility of your muscles.
Lastly, make sure you’re getting plenty of the right nutrients in your diet to cut down on that pain. Proteins, carbs, and healthy fats are all necessary to give your body the energy it needs to repair, build, and maintain your muscles. This is especially important as you age when your body needs more and more of these nutrients to stay healthy.