Watermelon juice may help you avoid muscle aches and pains.
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No one wants to struggle with pain after exercise. You don't have to choose between exercise and pain, though. The right drink can help properly nourish your body, reducing your risk of muscle pain. Of course, factors such as osteoarthritis, osteoporosis and muscle injuries can also cause pain, so if you struggle with chronic pain, talk to your doctor first.
The Magic of Water
Water should play a key role in your pre-workout routine, even if you drink other fluids to help combat muscle soreness. Dehydration can cause muscle spasms and fatigue and can also lead to more serious symptoms such as dizziness, nausea and fainting. Drinking water immediately before your workout and replenishing with more water as you sweat can help reduce pain.
Protein for Healthy Muscles
Athletes have long relied on protein drinks to help boost their ability to build strong muscles, but protein can also have a more immediate benefit. Muscle soreness is sometimes the result of muscle proteins breaking down as your body depletes its glycogen stores. Athletes who drink a protein drink immediately before a challenging workout can reduce the rate at which their muscles break down, reducing muscle pain.
A Little Bit of Sweetness
Fruit juice isn't just a sweet treat; it can help reduce muscle pain. A 2010 study published in the "Journal of Berry Research" found that the antioxidant properties of blackcurrant juice may reduce muscle pain and fatigue. Another study, published in 2013 in the "Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry," found that people who drank watermelon juice just before a workout had faster recovery times and fewer complaints of muscle pain. Both studies were small, so the results are preliminary but promising.
Coffee: More Than Just Energy
You might think of coffee as little more than a quick source of caffeine-induced energy, but a 2009 University of Illinois study found that coffee could play a helpful role in a workout routine. It followed men who drank 12 ounces of coffee immediately before cycling, and the coffee-drinking group reported less muscle soreness.