Updated: Feb 17
Cooling down after a sweaty #workout can fall low on your priority list, right in there with cleaning your refrigerator or flossing every day. But taking your time in returning your heart rate and blood pressure to normal is important because it reduces the risk of injury. It can also ease the fatigue of a good workout, and increase the chances that you'll do it again!
Here's how to cool down smart after a run, swim, or #StrengthTraining workout:
AFTER YOU RUN
Finish up with light intervals. Run at a challenging pace for 20-30 seconds, then walk or jog for a minute or two. Repeat three to five times, then stretch your calves, glutes, quads, and hip flexors - this will help post-run carbs get into your muscle cells to replace lost glycogen.
AFTER YOU SWIM
Try dipping underwater five to six times, and each time blow out all your air. Then swim just one-tenth the distance of your workout, nice and easy. Though the impact-free nature of swimming feels relaxing, a cooldown is critical to slowing your heart rate and preventing muscle #cramps and injuries.
AFTER YOU LIFT WEIGHTS
Take care of the muscles you just worked on by #stretching for five minutes. Then try a contrast shower - alternate between a couple of minutes of hot water and one minute of cold water. Why? Coldwater shots slow your #metabolism and takedown swelling to lessen the likelihood of soreness overload.