When we really push ourselves at the gym or on a hike, the soreness afterwards can sometimes hurt so bad it’s almost enough to dissuade us from returning to that activity.

Soreness is caused by a build-up of lactic acid that causes inflammation, pain, and tenderness. There have been many studies which have sought to find the most effective way at relieving soreness. Ultimately, which method of relief will be effective really depends on your body.

Below, we’ve listed some of the most popular and quickest ways to alleviate soreness so  you can quickly get back to doing the things you enjoy.

Stretching – while it may hurt while you’re doing it, stretching is one of the best ways to alleviate soreness. The pulling and contraction of your muscles moves the lactic acid around helping it disperse throughout the body. If you want to alleviate your pain, you’ve got to go through a bit of pain first.

Rolling – rolling is another one of the pain relief methods that requires a bit of pain at first. This method involves utilizing a foam tube to ‘roll’ muscles out. To learn how best to use this tool, look up some youtube tutorials.

Supplements – supplements such as glutamine and branched-chain amino acids help muscles to repair quickly. They can drastically reduce your recovery time and have they have added nutrient benefits as well.

Hydration – probably the most important (and easiest) thing you can do is hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Water helps flush your system and keep your cells and organs happy. Maintain your water level so your body can work efficiently and effectively to eliminate the acid build-up.

Ice bath/pack – the best combatant for inflammation (read: muscle soreness) is ice. Applying ice or better yet, submersing in an ice bath, can greatly reduce inflammation. Bonus: ice numbs nerve receptors which means less pain.