What you do after going to the gym is just as important as working out. Helping your muscles recover properly after an intense workout is the key to getting the results you want. The right post-workout routine will help you build more lean muscle and avoid soreness. Refueling your body will also give you the energy you need to keep up with your training plan.
Below, you’ll discover the most effective post-workout rituals for supporting your body through the recovery process and optimizing your post-workout results. Keep reading to learn how to recharge your body so you can keep training hard, feel your best and accomplish your fitness goals.
- What to Do After a Workout
- Rehydrating and Replenishing After a Workout
- Post-Workout Rituals
- IV Recovery After a Workout
- Book Your Recovery IV Therapy Appointment With Mobile IV Medics
What to Do After a Workout
Proper recovery after an intense workout is critical to being able to get up and do it all again the next day. Without taking the right recovery measures, your muscles won’t be able to rebuild themselves and you’ll end up further from your fitness goals instead of making gains. If you want to achieve your health goals, you need to develop a regular post-workout recovery routine.
Before diving into your post-workout rituals, make sure you take the time to slow down. While it might be tempting to head straight for the couch and not move again all day, your body will thank you if you give it a chance to wind down before becoming stationary. You can ease your body into stillness through active recovery.
Active recovery includes gentle, slow-paced movements that restore your body into a state of calm after enduring a difficult workout and getting pumped full of adrenaline and endorphins. These low-intensity activities can include a leisurely walk, a relaxing bike ride or meditative yoga. Letting your body gradually slow down can also help your muscles repair and rebuild faster.
Once you’ve gone through a short active recovery session, you may want to massage your muscles out. A self-massage after an intense workout can help your muscles recover and relieve post-workout soreness by improving blood flow and easing inflammation. Although receiving a professional massage is nice, you can save money by giving your muscles a self-massage with warm oil and massage tools like a foam roller or even a lacrosse ball.
Another way to reduce muscle inflammation is an ice bath. Taking an ice bath is a classic technique for helping your body recover after an especially challenging workout. Research has found that taking an ice bath after working out can decrease muscle soreness by 20%. However, if you’re hesitant to take the plunge, you can try alternative recovery methods, such as stretching or wearing compression stockings.
Regardless of the cooldown and recovery methods you choose, it’s imperative that you prioritize sleep. Sleep plays a pivotal role in your training and recovery because your body rebuilds, repairs and regenerates itself while you’re sleeping. Getting a minimum of eight hours of sleep each night is key to promoting cell renewal and muscle recovery. You can also give your body a recovery boost by taking a quick post-workout nap.
Rehydrating and Replenishing After a Workout
After a workout, it’s important to eat and drink with intention. If you want your muscles to get larger and stronger, you need to provide them with the right nutrients to rebuild after lifting. Certain foods will give your muscles the vitamins and minerals they need to recover quickly, grow and ward off inflammation.
In particular, foods with higher levels of protein, potassium, antioxidants and healthy fats can help facilitate a quicker recovery. Protein provides your body with the building blocks it needs to construct muscle fibers, making it a critical component of strength training. Healthy fats also give your body the sustenance it needs to keep working hard and getting you closer to your health goals. Similarly, antioxidants help fight inflammation, so your muscles feel less sore after workouts and you feel more energized.
Try including these three recovery-boosting foods in your post-workout meal to increase muscle mass:
- Blueberries: These tiny blue fruits are full of powerful nutrients like fiber, potassium, manganese, vitamin C and vitamin K. These vitamins and minerals fend off muscle fatigue and boost your immune system so that your body can maintain its energy as it recovers. Blueberries also offer antioxidants that reduce muscle inflammation and promote muscle recovery.
- Eggs: If you want to see massive gains, include eggs in your regular post-workout meals. Eggs are packed with protein and contain all nine essential amino acids for rebuilding your muscles and helping them recover faster. As a complete protein that’s low in calories, eggs are a great food for helping you get closer to your fitness goals.
- Avocado:Avocados offer the healthy fats and B vitamins your body needs to jumpstart its metabolism and heal its muscles after a tough workout. The nutrients found in avocados can also help your body make the most of the carbohydrates and proteins you consume, allowing your muscles and joints to recover more efficiently.
What you drink after working out is equally as important as what you eat. Post-workout hydration is key to recovering well after an intense sweat session. Once you’re done at the gym, you want to immediately replenish all the liquids your body has lost by drinking plenty of water. Water will help flush out and restore your system, facilitating the process of repairing torn and damaged muscles.
In addition to water, you may want to drink one of these three beverages after a workout:
- Chocolate milk: Chocolate milk is an ideal recovery drink because it replenishes your body’s glycogen stores while rehydrating you. The much-needed protein and carbohydrates in chocolate milk also make the perfect pair for refueling your freshly worn-out muscles.
- Green tea: Green tea is brimming with the antioxidants your body craves after being pushed to the max. Drinking green tea will rehydrate your body while boosting your metabolism and replenishing your energy levels. The antioxidants in green tea can also help metabolize fat while combatting post-workout inflammation and muscle soreness.
- Tart cherry juice: Drinking tart cherry juice post-workout is often recommended as an effective way of decreasing muscle inflammation. Because cherries contain plenty of antioxidants, vitamins and anti-inflammatory compounds, adding tart cherry juice to your post-workout routine can help repair your muscles and strengthen your immune system.
If you want to start taking your workout recovery seriously, you need to get in the habit of performing some post-workout rituals. Most importantly, your post-workout routine should include plenty of self-care. Taking care of yourself is crucial for staying on track with your training. Practicing self-care will remind you that exercising is an act of self-love, not punishment, and your body deserves to be cared for.
When you practice self-care, your body will feel refueled and recharged to continue training. You will also feel more motivated to stick with your new positive habits, now having the longevity to remain dedicated. Being patient with yourself and taking care of your emotional and mental health will help you preserve your physical health and persevere in pursuing your fitness goals.
One way of practicing self-care is taking a relaxing, warm bath. A hot soak can help you feel more at peace and happier after a strenuous workout. As a bonus, taking a bath in hot water can help increase blood flow and relax any pained muscles you may have. Keep in mind self-care is extremely individualized, so you’ll have to find what works the best for you.
Other self-care habits you could try include:
- Meditating or praying
- Sitting in the sunlight
- Reading a book
- Listening to soothing music
- Reflecting on things you’re thankful for
Another key component of your post-workout routine should be preparing for the next day’s workout. Getting ready for your next workout ahead of time will help ensure that the workout out actually happens and goes as smoothly as possible. Capitalize on the rush of endorphins and spike in motivation that occurs after completing a workout by using it to set yourself up for success tomorrow.
Eliminate any potential excuses for skipping your next workout by following these three steps after wrapping up at the gym:
- Re-pack your bag: After using everything you packed in your gym pack, pack it again for the next day. Picking out your workout clothes in advance ensures you have everything you need to head straight to the gym the next day, giving yourself less time to second-guess going.
- Prep your post-workout meal: Pack any pre-workout snacks or post-workout recovery shakes ahead of time, too. This kind of forward-thinking will help you have a successful workout the next day and keep you from having to worry about whether you’re keeping your body adequately fueled.
- Plan your workout: Avoid the stress of trying to come up with a workout routine on the spot by planning out your exercises the day before. Planning your workout ahead of time will also minimize confusion and ensure you stay on track to achieve your training goals.
IV Recovery After a Workout
One of the most powerful post-workout rituals of all is intravenous (IV) therapy. A post-workout recovery IV package will deliver essential nutrients directly to your bloodstream. The supplements in a recovery IV package are designed to assist your body in its natural processes of muscle, stress and energy recovery, so you can bounce back quickly.
Here are the ingredients in a recovery IV package that will help you achieve the best results from your training:
- IV fluid: IV fluid can help you avoid the exhaustion and fatigue that comes with dehydration. After sweating out a significant amount of your body fluid during your workout, you’ll need extra fluids to help replenish your energy levels. IV fluid is specially formulated to go directly into your bloodstream and provide you with the instant fluid deficit recovery your body needs.
- Vitamin B complex: Working out and sweating can also deplete your body of key water-soluble B vitamins and energy. Supplementing your B vitamin levels through IV therapy can help improve your vigor and recovery by giving your body the vitamins it needs to break down food and convert it to energy so you can recover fully.
- Vitamin B12: This B vitamin is particularly crucial for allowing your metabolism to function properly. Revving your metabolism with vitamin B12 will help your body combat fatigue, exhaustion and brain fog. Vitamin B12 will also help your body make DNA and give your nerve and blood cells a boost.
- L-Carnitine: L-Carnitine is another major player in helping the metabolism function and form energy. This compound helps break down excess fat in the blood and helps build muscle mass by improving the rate at which your body metabolizes glucose.
- High-dose magnesium: This mineral aids in numerous bodily processes, including energy production, protein formation, muscle function, genetic maintenance and nervous system regulation, all of which are crucial to post-workout recovery. Receiving high-dose magnesium through IV therapy can give ailing cells the chance to use magnesium in ways they can’t when magnesium is taken orally.
- MIC: Methionine, inositol and choline (MIC) are valuable nutrients for breaking down fat during metabolic processes. Turning fat into energy can help give you the energy you need to form more muscle tissue and fully recuperate after a workout.
- Vitamin C: When used in IV therapy, vitamin C can help decrease fatigue and even make working out feel easier. Vitamin C supports adrenal gland function, which helps manage your body’s response to the stress of working out more effectively.
- Taurine: This amino acid is crucial for neuroprotection, neurotransmission and neurogenesis. Specifically, taurine helps you regulate your stress levels so you can have more endurance and energy to devote to your workout sessions. Taurine may also benefit your sleep quality, allowing your muscles to recover more overnight and give you extra energy for the next day’s workout.
- Zinc: Zinc is an important mineral for highly active people because it aids in repairing your muscles after working out. Specifically, zinc is heavily involved in the production of the hormone testosterone, which is a key ingredient in building muscle mass. With zinc, your body can generate more lean tissue after a workout. In addition, zinc is necessary for improving your aerobic capacity and delivering enough oxygen to your muscles that inflammation doesn’t become an issue after you exercise.
While the recovery IV package is specially curated for post-workout benefits, you might want to try a hydration IV package or a weight loss IV package, depending on your exercise goals and recovery needs. Keep in mind that any IV package can be customized to suit your recovery needs. If you want to add anything to your IV package, you can request extra supplements or ingredients that will optimize your post-workout recovery.
Here are some add-ins you might want to include in your post-workout IV package:
- Medicine, specifically anti-inflammatory medicine
- Extra vitamin C
- Extra Magnesium
- Extra taurine
Book Your Recovery IV Therapy Appointment With Mobile IV Medics
If you want to make the most of your workouts, schedule a recovery IV therapy session with Mobile IV Medics. When you book with Mobile IV Medics, one of our registered nurses will come directly to your door and administer an IV package in the comfort of your own living room. We come to you so that you can relax and focus on your post-workout recovery. Check out our service areas to find the Mobile IV Medics closest to you.