If you exercise often enough, you will realize that no matter how many times you do, you will always get muscle aches after each workout. It’s your body’s way of saying they need some TLC, Tender Loving Care, after letting you rough house them.

Without proper care, your muscle aches can cause you to miss out on training days because the soreness will take some time to dissipate. Leaving it as it is without any form of recovery method will also cause your body to slowly break down and not be able to repair itself properly after each exercise. Thus, it is imperative to do something to remedy your aches and sores and to thank your body for a job well done. Here are four effective ways to do so.

1. Cherry juice

It seems that the little fruit is not just big on flavour but also big on antioxidants. According to a 2010 study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, antioxidant compounds found in tart cherries called anthocyanins are believed to be able to reduce inflammation. So the next time you pick up your bottle of post-recovery shake, try adding in some tart cherry juice for that extra boost to muscle recovery.

2. Ice

ice bucket

The next time you experience aches and sores after a workout, take a pack of ice from the freezer and apply it directly onto the affected area(s). As much as a hot shower will make us feel more relaxed, ice actually helps to prevent further muscle damage and speeds up the healing process. Wrap the bag of ice in a towel and leave it on the sore area for about 10 to 15 minutes to cool your body and ease the pain.

3. Deep heat gel

You can get these easily off any pharmacy counter and it works really well, especially for those who are constantly on the go and do not have a lot of time to take their post-recovery drinks or go for massages. Depending on how bad the pain is, you can decide how much of the gel you will like to apply on the affected area. However, do note that you have to rub it in to make it effective. The gel will provide a cool, tingling feeling which will numb your aches and sores for a period of time. Once the tingly feeling wears off, the pain will be magically gone too.

4. Massage

4733486 - woman getting thai massage from professional masseuse

Runners adore massages! A full body session helps to keep us relaxed and also softens up our limbs and gets rid of any pain we may be experiencing in our muscles. Similar to a well-oiled machine, our body can perform better when it has been rubbed the right way.