This is a guide for explaining and beating the burn you feel when training or working out. We all hit that wall, feel the burn, the one where you feel you can’t go any further and your muscles won’t stretch an inch more. It can ruin a session at the gym and it can damage your daily training.
So, why does the burn hurt?
‘The burn’ is actually lactic acid building up in your muscles. You produce it when you perform power exercises such as sprinting. Usually tissue in our bodies can remove it instantaneously, but when we exert ourselves lactic acid can build up too quickly and the tissue will struggle to take it away.
How can you prevent it?
Well you can’t prevent it all together, but you can hold it off with some useful techniques and improvements to your diet. Keeping the burn at bay is all about preparation and recovery. You can do certain things as you are exercising but the real changes will be made when you are not in the gym.
Hydration is key to preventing the build-up of Lactic acid. Lactic acid is water soluble, so the more water inside you, the less likely you are to feel a burn while you train. You should drink between 236.6 ml to 473 ml of water before you workout and then then drink at least 236.6 ml of water for every 20 minutes during the exercise. If you notice you are thirsty during a workout, you could already be dehydrated. Click here for more helpful advice.
Get loads of magnesium in you by eating vegetables such as swiss chard, spinach, collard greens, turnip greens and green beans, legumes like navy beans, pinto beans, kidney beans and lima beans and seeds such as pumpkin, sesame and sunflower seeds. Magnesium will help deliver energy direct to the muscles.
Try drinking baking soda and water. Baking soda improves anaerobic performance by reducing the acidity of blood pH cutting the muscle burn from lactic acid. Use 300mg of baking soda per kg of body weight.
Eat foods full of B vitamins like fish, shellfish, red meat, cereals, milk and eggs. B vitamins help transport glucose around the body, which fuels the muscles during a workout and reduces the need for lactic acid.
*Information on sports nutrition from LA Muscle.
Before exerting yourself, warm up your muscles by stretching. This will prepare them for the strain they are about to face.
Stretch again, this will ease the muscles down and stop you getting cramped later.
Horrible as it might sound the best thing you could do to recover is take an ice bath. When you get into an ice bath for 5 to 10 minutes, the icy cold water causes your blood vessels to tighten and drains the blood out of your legs. This process brings new oxygenated blood to your muscles and flushes out the lactic acid. Many sports stars live by their ice baths for their amazing rejuvenating powers.
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Guest Post. About the author: David is a fitness and health fan that watches what he eats and trains hard!