Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Sleep away Muscle Pain

Muscle Pain can be debilitating, not to mention
I remember the first time I ran a full mile up-hill. I felt great when I was done, and proud of my accomplishment, but the next day I could barely get out of bed. It hurt so bad to sit down I couldn't help the tears from squeezing out. I waddled like a duck for three days! But I stuck with it, and now am reaching greater running milestones. Unfortunately, every time someone challenges their body, they are going to experience some pain until they've mastered that level. That's just the way it is. You've heard the mathoms, "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger," and "pain is just weakness leaving the body." Until you stretch yourself, you cannot achieve anything greater.
 But muscle pain doesn't just go away overnight. Sometimes it gets in the way of the rest of our life, and until we are functional again, we shouldn't push ourselves farther. Here is something that I've found invaluable for muscle pain and stiffness... overnight!

What I take (before bed - on an empty stomach):

500-1,000mg GABA* (such as Source Natural GABA, or Natural Factors Pharma GABA)
400mg + Magnesium Citrate (such as Natural Vitality CALM, Trace Mineral Research Stress-X, or Source Naturals Mag Citrate)
50-100mg Turmeric or Curcumin extract (such as Terry Naturally BosCur or Curamin**, New Chapter Turmeric Force or Zyflamend pm)

Other Great products:
Hylands Restful Legs
Terry Naturally Muscle Relax
Hyalogic HA lozenges

 And make sure to get about 8 hours of sleep, too! Your body repairs best when asleep and resting. The hours before midnight are extra critical. Ol' Ben was right when he said "early to bed and early to rise!"

 I also love to take a long magnesium soak in the bath tub at the end of a long day, or an intense run. Most commonly known as Epsom salts, magnesium crystals relax the muscles by sending signals through the nerves to the brain. Completely safe and effective, magnesium is an essential mineral to the body, and is also helpful for treating stress, and a host of other things. (Use 1 tsp Health and Wisdom Inc. Magnesium Snow in your bath)

Magnesium Salt Bath
 But I'm not a professional athlete, and rarely spend more than 3 days a week at the gym, or on my regular running route. Sometimes one needs extra support, and a duel-action plan. Coming at the muscle from the inside and the outside can be extra soothing.

 Topical products for muscle or tendon pain are sold in nearly every grocery or drug store. Not all are natural or effective, just like supplements. I've worked in a whole food and supplement store for going on 5 years, and not only have I studied products, but I see which ones sell with glowing reviews, and which ones fade out of our shelves.

A few tried-and-true topical remedies:
NatraBio The Arnica Rub
Hurt No More spray-on

 I wish I could go on and on about this subject, because even non-athletes get sore muscles, and it may be an indicator of nutrient deficiencies, but I'm afraid that if I went into the how, when, where, and why, this post would take up pages and pages. And I haven't even touched on sports nutrition from food! Perhaps I'll find the time to go a little bit more into the subject.

Important Note:
 I am not a licensed health-care provider, and cannot diagnose or prescribe. I'm not claiming to be able to treat or cure any disease. I share my trustworthy, amateur knowledge to encourage you to carry on and make your own informed choices about health.

* GABA = gamma-Aminobutyric acid
** Curamin Extra Strength is available, as well as a formula for Healthy Tendons and Ligaments

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