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So you’ve nailed that yoga class/run/weight session and are feeling pretty good about yourself. As you should, you’ve taken the first step to reaching your fitness goals. But guess what? To recover efficiently and truly smash those #gains, you need to realise that exercise isn’t just about exercise. It’s about what you do before and afterwards too.

So step back, look at the bigger picture, (no, we’re not talking about the big mirror at the gym) and approach your fitness routine holistically with these pre- and post-workout rituals:

1. Stretching

Stretching before and after a workout is essential to preventing injury and decreasing your chance of getting the DOMs (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness). Here are a few warm-up stretches to try.

2. Fueling

After your workout, your body wants carbs and protein to help replenish glycogen stores and rebuild muscle, so make sure you eat a wholesome, well-rounded meal after your gym session.

Not eating sufficiently after a workout can leave you feeling ravenous later on, which can often lead to bad decisions (hello, pizza). Make it easy for yourself by packing some post-workout snacks into your gym bag.

3. Showering

After a strenuous workout, a cool shower (or bucket rinse for the Capetonians) can help decrease inflammation and speed up muscle recovery, so you’re less likely to feel stiff later on.

4. Taking MSM with Curcumin

A recent study showed that athletes who took curcumin, the golden anti-inflammatory powerhouse found in turmeric, experienced less muscle soreness and a quicker recovery time in comparison with their placebo-taking peers.

MSM, (Methylsulfonylmethane) is also a powerful anti-inflammatory that contains sulfur, a mineral required by the body to perform many important everyday functions. Indicated to assist with alleviating joint pain and arthritis, boosting the immune system, improving flexibility and restoring connective tissue, MSM helps the body mend and maintain the muscle tissues that get broken down by exercise. It also helps to repair damaged cartilage, tendons, ligaments and skin tissues.

Found in fresh and organic meat, vegetables and fruit, sulfur is something many of us lack due to a modern, over-processed diet. And although it is naturally present in our bodies, our levels of sulfur drop as we age, which is why it’s important to supplement this vital mineral so that our bodies can efficiently regenerate damaged tissues.

Take Releaf MSM with Curcumin for a muscle recovery boost, and try to make these simple rituals part of your fitness routine, to maximise the results you’re working towards.

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