How to Properly Cool Down After a Workout?
We all want to have a healthy and good-looking body. There sure are a lot of ways to achieve that kind of body. You can either eat healthy foods, maintain an active lifestyle, or perhaps just workout. All of those are effective ways to have the ideal body, but probably the best one if to hit the gym and workout.Not only does it help improve your cardiovascular health, but it also improves your overall physicality. That’s what’s great about working out. However, it’s not just about working out. When you’re into it, you also need to exercise the proper cool down method for best results.
That’s just what we’re going to talk about in this article. So how to properly cool down after a workout? Read on to know more about it!
But why do you need to cool down?
- Breathing and Heart Rates Goes Back to Normal
Before we proceed in knowing how you can cool down properly, it’s first important to know why you need to do it in the first place. There are a lot of reasons to that. However, one of the first things to know is that it brings your body back to normal.It does this by controlling your breathing and heart rate and makes it less active. It’s through this that you’ll feel more comfortable. It puts an end to your struggle in pushing your body to the limit.
- Avoid Getting Dizzy or Fainting
By cooling your body down, you’re also reducing the likelihood of fainting or getting dizzy. This is because your body doesn’t experience a sudden change in situation. When you’re working out, you exert effort using your muscles and bones. And that gives your body stress and it stays that way for quite some time until you finish working out.When you’re done, your body abruptly transitions into a more relaxed state. That abrupt transition is not recommended as it surprises your body into experiencing the “extremes”. And it’s in those extremes that you’re likely to get dizzy or worse, faint.
- Proper Preparation
Another cool thing about proper cool down is that it prepares your body for your next workout session. This happens because your muscles need to be conditioned for your next session as early as possible. And the earliest time possible is right after your working out. By simply cooling down, you’re making sure that the pressure and stress your muscles experience reduces gradually. This strengthens them and reduces the wear and tear that it’s likely to have if you don’t properly cool down.
- Flushes Out Waste Products
Lactic Acid is one of the most common waste products that is produced when you’re doing a physical activity. This is most common among gym enthusiasts because of the higher than average pressure and stress their body experiences. By flushing it out, you’re making your body lighter and healthier.
- Say Goodbye to Muscle Cramps and Spasms
It’s all about the gradual decrease of pressure and stress that your body benefits a lot from cooling down. By slowly cooling down your body, you’re able to make sure that your muscles aren’t abruptly transitioned into a calmer and less active state. Because if this happens, you’re most likely to experience muscle spasms and cramps which can ultimately lead to injuries.
Cooldown Tip #1: Lower Down the Intensity
In order for you to properly cool down, the first thing you need to do is to lower the intensity of your workout. Cooling down is not about immediately stopping whatever it is you’re doing. That’s not how your body works because it needs to go through some sort of a transition process. By simply lowering down the intensity of your workout, you’re ensuring that your blood pressure is on its right levels. For example, if you’re running, you can reduce your speed as you slowly transition your run into a jog, and then you’re jog into a walk.
Cooldown Tip #2: Rehydrate Yourself
Water is what makes life thrive. And as biological or farfetched as it sounds, that’s the truth that all gym enthusiasts must acknowledge. Rehydrate yourself in order for you to cool down properly.Water plays a vital role in your body’s temperature and various processes. By simply taking in water, you’re able to reduce your body temperature. And not only that, as it adds fluids to your body organs and muscles, making them function properly.
Cooldown Tip #3: Do Stretching
Stretching is an essential part of working out for building muscle or lose weight. This is what you need to do not only before but also after exercising. It’s in stretching that your muscles get warmed up. It makes them more elastic and flexible, which helps in reducing the chances of muscle stiffening and spasm.You might have just finished playing basketball. If so, then always do a few basic stretches. Stretch your arm and leg muscles to expedite the recovery process. Then again, it’s still all about the “transition process”.
Cooldown Tip #4: Drink Protein Shake
So you’re done drinking water and doing another set of stretches. Now, it’s time for you to drink protein shake. Protein shake replenishes your body with the minerals that water doesn’t have. Now is the perfect time for you to drink it because you lost again a considerable amount of energy with the stretching you’ve previously done. This is also the perfect time to absorb nutrients because your muscles are clamoring for it, knowing that they’ve been through pressure. Aside from those benefits, protein shake brings back the lost energy and it adds a bit of fats you can then again burn for your next workout session.
With all of these being said, you can clearly see how important it is to properly cool down. Though it might sound to have a lot of rules and things to remember, it still boils down to one principle. And that principle is all about the transition process. It’s really simple when you put it that way.
Your body needs enough time to gradually transition from an active state to a more relaxed situation. And that’s what you need to remember. Hopefully, you’ve learned a lot from this article. If so, feel free to share this with your family and friends. You can also ask us questions and we’ll happily get back to you. Till then, all the best of luck.
Author Bio: I’m Tina Howell, chief editor at XBodyNow. I have an in-depth knowledge about gym, fitness, bodybuiding… which are shared with you through my site. My mission is to make you aware about the right exercises, workout plans and nutrition
Thomas Matthys a former world-class track & field athlete and the founder of Swol Headquarters. He graduated from the University of Fordham with a Master’s degree in Science. Matthys is a certified sports nutritionist and personal coach of several professional athletes. Matthys has been involved in various clinical studies within Track & Field including one on the factors associated with muscle recovery and HIIT.