There are several all natural therapies that can help the body heal injuries faster and recover better. In this article I share my top 4 tips for healing pain and improving recovery.
How To Heal Injuries Faster : Top 4 Tips For All Natural Recovery Video
Hot-Cold Contrast Therapy
Hot-cold contrast therapy has several physiological effects that can enhance recovery, including reflexive vasoconstriction to cold followed by vasodilation from heat (blood vessel “pumping”), slowing of nerve conduction velocity (which decreases pain and muscle spasming/guarding), decreased firing of the muscle spindles (which can reduce the stiffness that occurs when injured) and increased flow of inflammatory byproducts out of muscle tissue, which is especially useful in acute inflammation stages in which swelling can cause pain and discomfort.
There are several ways you can use hot-cold therapy in your daily life. Here are some examples of hot-cold contrast that you can implement to heal injuries faster:
- Use therapy packs. I love the hot / cold therapy packs from Cureve. They are easy to use for both hot and cold treatments – I just wrap up my body in one of the gel sleeves and can use them while Im working on my laptop or watching Netflix. They are the best “lazy girls” treatment for days you need to help your body reduce inflammation but don’t want to stand up! My Injury Recovery Coaching clients report they like them too – it makes dealing with life in a cast or boot much easier. Check out the different styles and options here.
- Take a 5 minute shower with 20 seconds cold, 10 seconds hot, 10 times through.
- Contrast buckets. Pour two buckets of water: one with cold ice water, one with warm epsom salt water. Start with the warm bucket. Put your feet in for 10 minutes. Then 10 minutes in the cold water. Then repeat 2x all the way through for 40 minutes. I usually do this when working on my laptop.
- Go to the gym and sit in the sauna for 5-10 minutes, then jump into a cold shower for 2 minutes, and do rounds for 20-30 minutes.
- Take a 20 minute hot magnesium salts bath, then follow it up with a 5 minute icy cold shower.
Hot and cold contrast therapy can be time consuming BUT IT REALLY WORKS. Choose one of the above and use it consistently for muscle repair and recovery.
Myofascial Release / Massage therapy
Consistent foam rolling / myofascial release helps to keep tissues mobile, supple, and healing faster from tough training. But just like anything with fitness : YOU HAVE TO BE CONSISTENT. You cant just foam roll once a week and expect to see miracle results. Make foam rolling and regular massage a habit in your life and you’ll be able to heal injuries faster as well as recover from hard fitness sessions. It doesn’t take a lot of time to make a difference, a few minutes of foam rolling goes far in producing results. There are so many ways to integrate little bits of massage into your life.
To give you an example, my foam rolling / massage routine looks like this:
- Daily 20 minute total body foam rolling. I set a timer for 20 minutes and address any areas of tightness I feel in my body. I use an assortment of deep tissue massage toys including: the yoga tune up therapy balls, Hyperice Hypervolt and Vyper roller, and just a regular long foam roller . I let my body tell me what it needs: calves, quads, IT bands, lats – I love it all! I have a full playlist of Foam Rolling routines on my youtube channel, check it out here if you need guidance on how to practice self massage at home.
- 90 minute massage once a month. I am a member of Massage Envy and every month I get a free 60 minute massage as part of my membership. I add o 30 minutes to the free 60 minutes for a full hour and a half. I love my massage therapist, he really knows the body and always seems to fix me. I am really happy I became a member of Massage Envy because it reminds me the value of regular body work and is the reason I am so consistent with getting massage treatments!
- Stop, drop, and roll treatments. Anytime I feel in pain or stiff, I have my foam rolling toys near by to “stop, drop, and roll” to work out the kinks. Keep some sort of massage therapy tool on hand so you can fit in massage when your body is aching. I always travel with my yoga tune up therapy balls they are really amazing for the plane or car.
If you can commit to regular massage therapy on a daily and monthly basis you will enable your body to heal from injuries faster and improve recovery from tough fitness training. Put massage in your calendar. Make it a habit you don’t go without. Its not a luxury, its an essential element to healing faster, feeling better, and performing well.
If you are into health and fitness, chances are you are well aware of the power of quality nutrition for for easing joint pain, healing muscles faster, or decreasing inflammation. If you aren’t already, I strongly recommend following a low sugar, nutrient rich diet to help your body heal injuries faster. Numerous studies show that sugar can be addictive, cause inflammation, lead to a number of devastating illnesses, and delay your body’s ability to heal. My Hurt Foot Healing Diet and guide is the program where I give you a diet meal plan specifically designed for healing. If you want to recover and feel your best, I highly recommend investing in this diet course.
If you already follow a healing diet, you can try to add a few additional all-natural supplements. It may seem overwhelming when you walk into your pharmacy and are bombarded with pills and powders. Lets keep it simple, here are some of the supplements worth trying to heal injuries faster:
- Turmeric. Turmeric has long been revered in natural medicine for its ability to fight inflammation and reduce pain, making it great for healing from injury. Numerous studies have indicated that the anti-inflammatory effects of the curcumin found in turmeric are comparable to those found in prescription drugs such as hydrocortisone, phenylbutazone and over-the-counter pain killers. Turmeric can be taken in capsule form, as a tea, and as a lotion applied topically to the plantar fascia area. Click here to learn more about the highest quality Active Atoms turmeric and use the discount code “Turmeric 1004” for a lower price!
- Bromelian. Bromelain is derived from pineapples and is considered a powerful anti-inflammatory substance. It also aids digestion and nutrient absorption. Studies have found bromelain to be as effective as ibuprofen and aspirin in reducing pain and inflammation. I took Bromelian when recovering from my Wisdom Tooth surgery as well as Sesamoid Injury. The Bromelian here is 100% natural so its what I buy for my own use.
- Electrolytes and hydration. Dehydration is known to cause more muscular pain and often our bodies are deprived of water! Many of the members of my Hurt Foot Fitness Coaching program have found that simply adding more water and using electrolyte powders to aid in hydration has helped them with pain reduction and healing. I prefer the Ultima Electrolyte powder packs because they are so easy to use on-the-go and come in different flavors. But Ive also used the NUUN electrolyte tabs and find those work well too!
- Vital Proteins Collagen. I was really skeptical about collagen at first, but then I got some Vital Proteins collagen from Whole Foods market and have been hooked ever since. I prefer Vital Proteins because it easily mixes with foods and beverages – you can’t even taste it! I put it in my daily protein smoothie and oatmeal. Collagen is the mechanical strength of bone. It helps to build bone matrix, repair connective tissues for improved elasticity, improve blood vessel circulation, and promote wound healing. Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides are collagen molecules that are small enough to get quickly absorbed and used by our body.
These are just a few of the all-natural supplements you can try to heal injuries faster. I include even more suggestions for success in My Hurt Foot Healing Diet and guide. Ive used them all and to be honest: they do really work. A little bit here, a little bit there, and you notice some significant changes in the way your muscles feel the day after a hard workout, or the pain relief you experience in your joints. While you cannot replace the need for good rest and a high-quality diet, natural supplements and a diet rich in vitamins and minerals can help you to regain health more quickly. Investing in the all natural supplements above may make a significant difference.
Theres always some beauty or supplement company pushing some miracle cream that is supposed to magically heal pain. Most of it is total BS. But there are a few things out there that actually DO work and Ive benefitted from using them when trying to heal injuries faster.
- Arnica is a plant with a long history of use in the treatment of sprains, bruises and muscle strains. The compound found in the arnica plant is helenalin – an anti-inflammatory substance which has been shown to inhibit the production of inflammatory agents and to reduce bruising and swelling. Arnica also dilates capillaries, drawing increased blood flow into the treated area. It can be applied topically in the form of a cream, lotion or tincture to an injury to reduce inflammation. You can take arnica orally as a tablet. I usually get the value pack because it comes with both!
- Zheng Gu Shui. You’ve probably never heard of zheng gu shui but let me tell you: it’s a game changer. Zheng Gu Shui translates to ‘mending bone water’ in English. Zheng Gu Shui is a liniment especially designed to relieve pain associated with fractures, bruises and other types of mild trauma. I put the ointment on my foot nightly and also found it helpful with sore muscles, aches, and pains.
- Epsom Salt. Taking regular epsom salt baths has been powerful for me in dealing with pain and promoting recovery. Epsom salt contains magnesium and sulfates which help flush toxins, improve absorption of nutrients, help form joint proteins, brain tissue and mucin proteins. I take a hot bath several times a week to promote circulation and healing.
And last but not least, if you are struggling with a lower leg injury (foot, ankle, leg), I also highly suggest investing in yourself and joining my FULL Hurt Foot Fitness Coaching Program which will connect you to ALL the resources you need to stay in GREAT shape while healing from an injury. Many members report that doing the exercise program in the course has helped them heal faster. Learn more about it here.
So there you have it, those are my staples to heal injuries faster! Now I want to hear from you: what do you swear by that helps to reduce inflammation and promote healing? Im always looking for more tips! Let me know your healing remedies below in the comments.
Here for you. I hope the above helps you and your body feel better!
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