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Sometimes life feels like a full-contact sport. Whether you’re playing with the kids, trying a new workout routine, or just tackling overdue household projects, sometimes you just wake up in the morning and wince. A certain amount of muscle pain is to be expected when you’re living an active life, but how do you know the difference between a healthy ache and injury? And how do you get back to being able to flex without pain? Here’s what you need to know about recovering when your muscles are complaining.
What are your muscles recovering from?
Before we can talk about how Hemp Oil may help muscles as they recover from exercise, we have to quickly run through what’s happening to get them sore in the first place. Not all pain is a problem, but it is a sign that your body needs a little TLC.
As the Cleveland Clinic explains, there are two normal types of muscle pain that can occur with exercise. The first is acute muscle soreness, and it’s the classic achy feeling you may get after a good workout. When you step out of the gym with a mild burning feeling in your muscles, then you know you’ve pushed your workout hard enough to build up lactic acid and challenge your muscles.
The other type of pain can strike anywhere from one to three days after exercise. Called delayed-onset muscle soreness, or DOMS, this pain makes itself known with stiffness, tenderness to the touch, and a small, temporary dip in how strong your muscle is. If you thought you were just a little sore, then climbed out of bed one morning and felt surprising levels of pain and regret, welcome to DOMS.
Although DOMS tends to feel worse than acute muscle soreness, they’re both caused by the same thing: tiny tears in the muscle fibers. These tears are the first step in how the body builds stronger muscles. When the muscle experiences these small, controlled tears, the damage is then repaired with more muscle fibers, adding new strength.
Whether you’re dealing with the milder form of soreness or the more intense type that makes you whimper as you sit down or stand up, the recommendations for feeling better are the same. You can still exercise, but you should stay at a much lower level of intensity than you usually do until you feel better. Some experts recommend starting at about one-third of your normal intensity. Pay close attention to pain levels, and if you start to feel worse, stop and wait to try again another day. The inflammation and compromised strength of your muscles make you more susceptible to injury, so be cautious.
While most of us associate muscle soreness with working out in the gym, there are plenty of ways to feel the ache as a result of everyday life. Projects that require a lot of unusual movements, such as painting walls or moving boxes, can challenge muscles in ways they’re not used to. Even playing with your children can tax your muscles significantly. Have you ever tried to play a video dance game with your kids? Even if you consider yourself fit, the exertion is sure to leave you wincing.
Especially considering that repetitive, unusual movements are most likely to lead to DOMS, it’s not uncommon for normal life to eventually lead to muscle pain. Whether you’re an athlete or not, sometimes your muscles need some extra care.
A word of caution: there are some kinds of exercise-induced pain that require medical attention. If your pain is sudden and sharp, you experience a lot of swelling, it restricts your range of motion, the pain keeps you awake at night, or it doesn’t get better after several days of rest and care, then you may be dealing with an injury. Although making time to see a doctor isn’t fun, an unusual, painful, or persistent injury needs to be looked at by a medical professional. Ignoring it can make the damage worse and harder to heal.
Hemp Oil may help achy muscles
Normal muscle soreness and even injuries can both benefit from the same tools: pain control and anti-inflammatory action. Icing the area is a great approach to start with because it can help with both the ache and the swelling. Another way to help your body recover is with Hemp Oil.
Scientists are just beginning to understand how cannabinoids such as CBD affect pain and inflammation. The evidence is growing that they can be an important tool to help with both. One review of the scientific literature on CBD and sports performance pointed to the “robust” anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects of CBD. The research even shows promise for the cannabinoid in helping the body heal from skeletal injuries.
Studies also show that another potential important benefit of Hemp Oil is that it is unique in how it tackles inflammation and pain. It seems to target different processes in the body to deal with pain and swelling than other anti-inflammatories or pain relievers. While NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen, work by blocking prostaglandins, cannabinoids seem to work by targeting the endocannabinoid system, helping to regulate the processes that deal with these responses. Because they work in different ways, some people may find that they get more benefit from CBD, especially if NSAIDs aren’t working for them anymore.
These anti-inflammatory and pain-reducing properties can even support the body in recovering from injury, but it bears repeating: see your doctor if you’re injured.
Sleep is vital for recovery
Immediate pain and inflammation control are front-line responses to muscle pain, whether from normal post-workout soreness or from injury. But for your body to efficiently heal, it’s very important to get plenty of good-quality sleep. One study showed that sleep deprivation reduced the protein synthesis needed to repair muscles that have been damaged by high-intensity exercise. If it takes the body longer to build those new muscle fibers, it’s going to take you longer to flex without pain.
Another study looked at elite soccer players, whose sleep is often fragmented by their lifestyle. Factors such as travel, stress, late-night bright light exposure, and sleeping in unfamiliar places can all lead to occasional sleep deprivation for the players. This not only causes mental fatigue and fogginess, but it also seems to have significant negative impacts on their muscles. For example, the players showed impaired replenishment of their muscle glycogen stores. Without sufficient glycogen, muscle cells can’t produce energy fast enough, leading to fatigue. Their bodies also demonstrated a reduced ability to repair muscle damage.
The takeaway here is not only that these poor soccer players need better sleep to function at their best, but that you do too, especially when you’re recovering from exertion. Unfortunately, the problem is that muscle pain or soreness can make it difficult to fall asleep and sleep deeply. Hemp Oil may be able to help with that too.
One review of the scientific literature concluded that the way cannabinoids interact with certain receptors in the brain seems to have promising effects on sleep. While the authors point out that more research is needed, the potential benefits are encouraging, especially considering how many people struggle to get enough sleep.
For more information on how cannabinoids interact with sleep, please read our post on the subject.
Aging leads to issues in muscle recovery
When you think about people who have lost muscle strength with age, you may imagine someone in their 70s or older. However, these changes begin much earlier than that. The Scientist points out that people as young as those in their 30s experience a decrease in muscle mass, because of how muscle cells grow and repair.
Muscles have a specific type of stem cells, known as satellite cells. These are the only cells in the body that are able to repair muscle, but unfortunately, they start to dwindle in number as we age. By the time people are in their early 70s, they only have one-tenth the number of the satellite cells they had as young adults.
Another key issue is the mitochondria. These tiny power producers in the cells can also be depleted with age. The reduction in the function and number of mitochondria comes hand-in-hand with muscle aging.
So how do you keep your muscles strong as you age? Exercise is one important strategy to maintain strength, although you may find that you need more recovery time as you get older. Another important thing to pay attention to is that you get adequate amounts of high-quality protein in your diet. And be sure to support your muscle’s health with the right antioxidants.
One study showed that the antioxidant apigenin reduces oxidative stress, which in turn helps to combat the reduction in muscle mass. This mighty antioxidant even seems to help preserve the health and number of mitochondria in the cells. Apigenin can be found in vegetables, such as celery hearts, rutabaga, and parsley. But our favorite source is Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil.
Apigenin is just one of the flavonoids found in the hemp plant. The reason we use our unique LipidTrans™Infusion Process is to preserve all the beneficial compounds found in the plant. Keeping substances such as apigenin intact requires extra care, but we believe it’s worth the effort.
While CBD is a powerful element that tends to get all the attention, hemp has many other beneficial compounds to offer as well. It’s full of terpenes, a wide array of cannabinoids, flavonoids, phytonutrients, fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals. Scientific research tends to isolate single compounds for study, but increasing evidence supports the idea that all these substances interact and work better together. This is known as the True Entourage Effect, and you can click here to read a wealth of information about it.
Exercise and emotional resilience
Truly caring for your muscles so you can keep them strong, healthy, and in top form requires some dedication. They need a balanced combination of work, rest, nutrition, and care. The simple fact is that not everyone feels emotionally up to that level of effort, especially during high-stress times in life. It’s simple to say that a regular exercise program, good nutrition, and high-quality sleep should be a high priority. It’s much harder to actually prioritize them when life continues to challenge you.
It can help to keep in mind that all these healthy choices build on one another. Regular exercise not only helps preserve muscle mass as you age, but it’s also been shown to improve people’s resilience in response to stress. In return, being able to cope with stress well makes it easier to commit to healthy choices. You could even say that when you help your muscles recover, they return the favor and help you feel better too.
Another way to help your body cope with stress so you’re on top of your game is with Hemp Oil. To read more about how Hemp Oil interacts with moods and homeostasis in the body, our post is
Whether you’re pushing for bigger gains in the weight room or overdoing the fun of playing tag with the kids, sometimes life calls for a little extra recovery time. With a little care and a few tools to support your health, you can be back in top form soon. We invite you to try our Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil as a part of your healthy living approach to staying strong. As well as the Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil Tinctures and Capsules we have available, you may also find our Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil Sports Balm useful for soothing achy muscles.
At Synchronicity™ we are committed to bringing the very best Hemp Oil products to our customers. We have invested decades in developing the best hemp plants and our extraordinary LipidTrans™Infusion Process, so we can deliver the best of those plants to you. Please feel free to contact us with any questions or for more information.