After working out it’s totally normal to experience muscle aches – it’s DOMS (Delayed Onset of Muscle Soreness). Although it’s painful, it’s actually something many of us love – because it proves that our bodies are changing and improving – and that all of the hard work is paying off!

If your muscles are aching so much that you really need some relief, don’t reach for the painkillers – try these tips:

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Use a foam roller

Foam rollers don’t look like much, but never underestimate the power of those little rolls of joy! You apply pressure using the foam roller to the area where you’re experiencing muscle aches, and it basically provides a deep tissue massage. Be prepared for it to be uncomfortable to begin with, but the pain will subside as the pressure is applied because the foam roller relaxes your tightened muscles.

Massage the area

If your pain is in an area you can reach and you don’t have access to a foam roller, try massaging the muscle to soothe the pain and relieve the tension. Alternatively, book an appointment for a sports massage – it’s a great way to relax and get professional treatment to soothe your muscle aches and pains.

Have a warm bath

Taking a bath is perfect for not only soothing your muscles, but also winding down and having some ‘me time’. Add some Epsom salts to get even more benefits from the bath, then lay back and relax.

Eat plenty of protein

This isn’t going to instantly stop the pain, but protein is essential for muscle repair, so although it might not feel like it’s doing anything right now, it will help to rebuild the torn muscles. Eating plenty of protein regularly in your diet will help your body to repair your muscles after future workouts.

Stretch out

If you’re experiencing pain and discomfort then stretching the muscle will really help. Admittedly it hurts, but it’s worth it because you’ll feel an instant relief and loosening of the muscle tension. Do this repeatedly throughout the day and you’ll notice a little more flexibility in the muscles each time.

If you’re regularly experiencing severe muscle pain after working out then you might not be warming up and cooling down correctly. Always make time to warm up before your workout so your body is prepared for what you are about to put it through, and although it might not be high on your priority list after exercising, always cool down afterwards. This will prevent any serious damage to your muscles.

Read more posts about getting started with exercise:

It’s OK To Be a Beginner In an Exercise Class

What are reps and sets in the gym?

13 tips for weight lifting beginners

What should I be doing as a warm up?

Why should you warm up before a workout?

My top 4 abs exercises

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