A workout can include many different activities. While you may equate working out with a rigorous visit to the gym, it can also be training for a run, practicing for soccer, and even hiking in the mountains. 

All of these are activities that help you build muscle, stamina, and good heart health. However, the time spent during the workout isn't the only time that you should consider the impact your activities are having on your body. 

You also need to consider what happens after your workout, and here's the why and how.

Supplement Your Health

While many people may subscribe to the philosophy that if there is no pain there is no gain, you actually don't have to endure prolonged suffering. 

You have options when it comes to post-workout supplements that are designed to not only reduce your recovery time but can also reduce the intensity of muscle soreness. 

Supplements can also provide additional protein, which is important to muscle repair and growth. Even if you don't take a supplement, you should try to eat protein within an hour of completing your workout. 

If you're not sure if a supplement is right for you, always discuss your fitness routine and goals with your doctor. 

Stay Hydrated

Keeping your body hydrated before, during, and after your workout is essential not only to regulating your body temperature and avoiding dehydration in the process of losing large amounts of fluid in your sweat. 

It's also important to reduce any cramping that may occur later. Choose a healthy, low-calorie drink such as flavored water or even milk. 

Cooling Down

It can be tempting to skip the cool-down period because after all, you broke a really intense sweat. Yet, taking time to cool down helps your heart ease back into its regular rhythm. It also helps reduce soreness and injury to your muscles. 

Cooling down should include progressively slower movement and breathing. Take time to continue stretching your muscles, allowing your body to enjoy the benefits of improved flexibility and muscle strength. 

A good cool-down should last at least 10 minutes. Make a cool shower part of your cool-down process. This will further aid in preventing injury and soreness. 

Get Dressed

While some people may not mind continuing to wear the clothes that just got drenched in sweat, there are bigger reasons for having a change of clothes than how you look or smell. By continuing to wear damp clothes, you are creating a fungus-friendly environment

Under your clothes, the crevices of your skin continue to be moist because the fabric that should be absorbing that moisture is drenched in sweat. 

Get out of your workout clothes as soon as you can. Rinse off if you can, and dress in something dry, absorbent, and comfortable. 

Enjoy a Massage

While not everyone has the ability to enjoy a massage after their workout, those who can surely benefit. Research has shown that not only do massages help keep the aches and pains at bay, but they can also help improve your muscle strength. 

If you don't have anyone willing to help give your muscles a gentle, deep rub, you can always try massage tools. 

From backs to feet, there are electrical and battery-powered options for every inch of your body. While it probably won't feel as good as the soft, warm touch of hands, it's the next best thing. 


As you can see, what you do after your intense workout is every bit as important as what's happening during your workout. 

You wouldn't want to rush your workout, so don't rush matters that must take place following your workout. 

Providing your body with the tools it needs to repair, strengthen, rehydrate, and stay healthy is essential to your entire workout plan. 

If you plan to work out an hour, plan for an additional 30 minutes for your post-workout routine.


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