If you are lucky enough to own a jacuzzi or hot tub, you are well aware of how wonderful it is to hop in after a long day of work to de-stress and relax. Playing soft music with some candles to set the mood and you can feel a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of regular life.
Those of you who have recently started to exercise in an effort to lose weight may be finding yourselves with various aches and pains. Let’s face it, if those muscles haven’t been used in a long time, naturally they are going to let you know and their form of communication is a bit painful, or at least a tad bit more uncomfortable than you may be used to.
Becoming sore is a part of working out and of the process of getting into shape. But it’s also important you realize the difference between being sore and an actual injury. Quite a different thing there. If during your workouts you twisted an ankle, felt an actual “pull” while running, or another instance you know was not a normal feeling, then you definitely don’t want to be getting into your jacuzzi or hot tub afterwards.
If you are injured the increase in heat will cause the injured area to swell and actually cause a delay in the healing process. For an injury, aside from having a medical professional check it out, it is highly recommended to ice the area immediately after the injury 3-5 times per day in 20 minutes intervals for a few days until swelling subsides. Again, speak to your doctor if you have any concerns about what’s going on with your body so you do not potentially cause more damage.
So you’re ready to use the jacuzzi or hot tub and you’re positive there is not an injury, one of the first things you should do is not hop in right after working out. As tempting as it may be especially after running 8 miles or an intense Bootcamp workout to get in the soothing tub, you need to allow your body time to naturally cool down after a workout.
Think about it this way. Your body is already running hot after a workout and blood is being pumped to your hands and feet in an effort to cool the body down. Why would you put more stress on your heart by hopping into a 100+ degree pool of water?
One way to handle this issue is to get into a post workout routine. A habit you always do after exercising. One of the most ideal habits you should develop after working out is a cool-down rehydrating and stretching session. This way you will have the opportunity to hydrate yourself with water and properly stretch for 10-15 minutes after working out and at the same time allow time for your body to cool down.
After this stretching/cool down period you can safely get into your jacuzzi or hot tub and relax. Be sure to set a timer or alarm so you don’t stay in too long. It’s recommended to limit the time to 10-15 minutes.
If you have been wondering when to use a jacuzzi or hot tub, try this after your next workout and see what you think. Hopefully you’ll see the health benefits to using these therapeutic tools in the proper manner so your body can truly enjoy their effects.