Tuesday’s Tips — Oh My Aching…Everything

I just finished a two-day marathon of transplanting, pruning, and garden cleanup. Still to go are mulching, freshening up some containers, and planting some bulbs and shrubs. That’s going to have to wait a day or two to give my aching muscles a chance to recover.

Gardening is hard work and the older you get, the more of a toll it takes on your body. Much as Mary Beth and I would like to power through, denial in full force, we simply can’t ignore how tired and sore all that lifting, squatting, bending, and digging makes us. No matter what age you are, if you’re in the garden all day you’ll feel it later on.

And I was really feeling it last night. So into the hot water I went and as I was soaking it occurred to me that we should share some of our best tips for pampering our aching bones. So here are a few things that will help you recover faster:

  1. Soak your bones. Get into a nice hot bath to which you’ve added some epsom salts (good for the garden and the gardener) or sea salts. Add a few drops of lavender for a relaxing, healing soak.
  2. Drink some tea. Yogi Tea has two products that really do seem to speed recovery and make us feel less achy after a long day of planting — Joint Comfort and Green Tea Muscle Recovery (which I’m sipping right now).
  3. Rub your pain away. Rub those aching muscles with some Arnica gel. It will reduce the swelling and tenderness. It’s great for bruises too. Another great product that I just discovered it Joint Rescue by Peaceful Mountain in Boulder. It’s a soothing organic and wild-crafted herbal gel that helps relieve pain and swelling in arthritic joints.
  4. Stretch it out. Gentle stretching is a good way to relax your tight muscles. Here are a few yoga stretches that will really help.
  5. Meditate. Studies have shown that meditation really can relieve pain. One study at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center found ” … a big effect – about a 40 percent reduction in pain intensity and a 57 percent reduction in pain unpleasantness. Meditation produced a greater reduction in pain than even morphine or other pain-relieving drugs, which typically reduce pain ratings by about 25 percent.” Pretty amazing!
Do any or all of these and you should be feeling better soon. It’s important not to push too hard and to take care of yourself. Be kind not just to others, but to you too.

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