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What You Should Be Doing Post a Workout

Have you ever wondered what you should be doing after a workout?

When we go for a workout, we get so consumed with what we are doing then and there, that we often forget to keep in mind what we should be doing after it. Maintaining a post workout regime is equally important, if not more, than following a schedule during one. Generally, after our workout, we tend to grab our keys and our water bottles and bolt for the exit to go home. But by doing so, we’re missing out on giving our body some much needed time to recuperate and get back to normal. In order to reap maximum benefits of your workout routine, you must follow the five simple things mentioned below. Some of these (if not all) are already a part of our routines, but if it’s not, then it is recommended that you start incorporating them into it!

workout exercise healthy habit practice post regime schedule cool-down relax

Cool Down

Your workout doesn’t end after the last step, in fact, what follows is even more important. When you do an intense workout, your heart rate elevates close to the maximum which is approximately 220 beats per minute. Once you’re done with your workout, it is crucial that you spend some time to bring it back down to normal, which is roughly 60 to 80 beats per minute. Irrespective of what type of workout you are doing, whether you’re running, biking, swimming, or sweating it out in the gym, slowing down your pace for the last five minutes is the perfect cool down. The reason why cooling down your body is important is because it helps avoid fainting or dizziness, which sometimes happens when blood starts pooling in the large muscle areas after suddenly stopping a rigorous workout. Moreover, it also helps in cleansing your body of all the residual waste.

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Stretch

Stretching is essential when it comes to a post work out regime. Many trainer’s advice going from the cool down phase into a stretching phase where you work on getting your muscle flexibility back to normal. While many people consider the cool down phase and the stretching phase to be one and the same, both have their own advantages and the recommendation is that you do both and skip neither. After you relax on the treadmill for 5 – 10 minutes, get yourself to stretch out your body for a little bit. Stretching not only helps in reducing lactic acid build up in the body, but helps in building muscle mobility as well. after a good stretch post your workout, you’ll not only feel calm and relaxed, but you’ll feel more limber as well.

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Drink Up

When it comes to a post workout regime, nothing is more cardinal than hydrating your body with a lot of water. When you work out, your body loses a lot of water and if you don’t replenish that back it could result in muscle cramping and spasms. While it is important to drink water while you’re actually exercising, it is even more important to drink water once you’ve completed your schedule. The trick is to sip water slowly and not too fast, that way it helps your body gain back what its lost without overwhelming it with large quantities. If you sweat out more than the necessary amount of water from your body without re-hydrating regularly, it can have adverse effects, making your workout routine redundant!

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Get Some Nourishment

This one may seem a little counterproductive, but eating right after a strenuous workout is essential. Now that doesn’t mean you go stuff yourself with junk food and things that aren’t good for your body. The trick is to eat smart after a workout for it to show positive effects on your body. Eating things that are high in portions are good for a post workout snack. Don’t, worry, this doesn’t cancel out all the calories that you’ve burnt. When we workout our bodies burn fat for energy and it is crucial to replenish it with healthy calories to help repair and refuel. A post-workout snack should be around 150 calories, and contain a bit of protein to help rebuild muscles and carbs to offer energy. Bananas, healthy granola bars, apples, sweet potatoes and almonds are some good post workout snacks.

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Change

Sometimes it’s the simplest of things that slip your mind. When someone tells you that going in for a shower and changing out of your workout clothes is an essential thing to do once you’re done with your time at the gym, you must be thinking – well, isn’t that obvious. But, do ask yourself, how often do you actually do that. Usually, once we are done sweating it out at the gym, we come back home and become too lazy to give ourselves a good clean. But here’s the thing, staying in your sweaty clothes for too long can result in you falling sick, which in turn results in your careful planned workout regime to go out the window. So if you value your time at the gym and if you would like to keep that going, change! Besides, it’s hygienic as well.

What you do post a workout is equally important to what you do during one. Remember, you can’t clap with one hand, and only when you combine the two together is when you get optimum results.

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