Rules of the Road After A Massage – Keeping that Healing FeelingJohn Stamoulos
You just had a wonderful massage and are feeling relaxed, clear-headed and energized in a good way! So how do you stretch out the benefits of the massage you just had.
Massage is known to have that effect – it Improves circulation, reduces high blood pressure, releases toxins, improves joint flexibility, helps calm aches and pains and can give you a boost of pure bliss and energy.
So, now what? Is this just a fleeting ‘feel good’ moment or can you keep that healing feeling going?
Here are a few tips to help you get the greatest benefit from your massage:
- Drink plenty of water – to flush out toxins
Water helps the blood and the lymphatic system function more efficiently as they carry waste from the body’s organs, tissues and cells. This is especially important after a massage when the circulation of the blood and the lymphatic systems are increased and the massage has helped move toxins out of the body more rapidly. Thus, adding extra water to what you normally drink and doing so after a massage will help the blood and lymphatic systems ‘take out the trash’ in your body. The end result – you feel better longer!
NOTE: The water is to be ingested as an undiluted drink – ie – not in tea, alcohol, coffee or soft drink or alcohol. Pure water is the only beverage that will support the blood and lymph systems operate more efficiently.
- Make sure you have a small snack – preferably before and after massage
Having a massage increases the function of your digestive system so it is important to give your body some energy to counteract any lightheadedness or hunger you might be feeling after a treatment. Having a similar small snack before the massage can help alleviate any issues immediately after massage. The extra energy will help prolong that ‘just had a massage’ feeling.
- Get some rest
Instead of heading out for a night on the town with friends or going back to work, working out or going for a run, the relaxed, ‘loose muscle’ condition of your body can be best preserved with rest. If at all possible, give yourself a mini-vacation and head home to put your feet up and chill. You might even consider sinking into a warm (not hot) bath with Epsom salts to help further relax and de-stress you. When you take some extra self-care time, it can go a long way to staying in the present afterglow of your massage experience.
It is important to note that working out after a deep tissue massage where muscles have been already worked out through stretching and lengthening techniques can cause injury. Just like any workout, your muscles need recovery time after a massage too!
- Let emotions flow – without judgment
The energy of your emotions is stored in the cells of the body. Moving out toxins and increasing circulation as massage does, can also bring up the release of emotional toxicity. Often any emotions that surface are symptoms of the release of stress and tension that may have been held in the body for a long time. Once the adrenaline and cortisol production has been quieted through a massage, the body’s defenses are no longer ‘on guard’ and your stress is free to leave through you allowing your emotions to carry them away. Prolong the wonderful warm and soft feelings you experienced during your massage by releasing your emotional toxicity.
- Make massage a regular part of your life
Regular massage has a positive cumulative effect on your body functions as well as on your inner sense of well-being. Massage activates the parasympathetic nervous system, reduces adrenaline and cortisol (stress hormones) and increases the production of serotonin, dopamine and oxytocin (anti-stress hormones). The more regularly you have a massage and then practice some of the above tips, the more your mind, body and spirit will adapt to the upbeat and healthy effects of massage.
It is a win-win for your health and your happiness.