While massage has been most commonly regarded as simply a service to help you relax, there are actually numerous benefits that your body experiences. For those who are seeking to achieve a healthy body and overall wellness, massages can play an essential role in your fitness agenda.
As we exercise, our bodies expend energy. Our muscles can become sore or even strained, especially during the first few fitness sessions we undergo. And like a car, we sometimes need a tune-up in order to continue functioning at 100%.
Helping body functions
The most commonly renowned benefit of a massage is to loosen and relax the muscles. During a workout, lactic acid can form in the muscles, which is what causes the “muscle burn” we feel the day after. This happens when these bodily chemicals accumulate in the muscle tissue, causing a burning feeling, but it can also leave you with little desire to get moving again. Lactic acid is commonly the result of lack of oxygen in the muscle tissue and forms as a result of muscle activity. This irritation commonly dissipates within a few days, but not before lactic acid has hindered the tissue’s ability to metabolize minerals and nutrients properly.
By massaging the muscles, you can recover from soreness or injury and even prevent it in the future. This is because the massage provides more oxygen and nutrients to the surrounding tissues. Blood flow is increased to the areas, specifically the muscles. Because the muscles are responsible for movement and ultimately play a key role in converting food into fuel, their proper function is essential to any fitness agenda.
In addition to increasing blood flow, massages increase the body’s ability to detoxify itself by pushing chemicals out of the muscles. Toxins, including lactic acid, are able to be transferred out of their stored status and back into circulation. Because the toxins are being removed from the body, be sure to drink plenty of water to help eliminate them properly.
At the physical level, massage therapy will chemically help return wellness and increase your natural healing ability. Without the harmful toxins that could hinder your fitness agenda, your body will be less susceptible to injury and far more efficient. Even though the lymph system and liver are primarily responsible for eliminating toxins, the toxins can still accumulate and are normally stored in fatty and muscular tissues, making it difficult to properly process them. Sources of the toxins can vary anywhere between unhealthy diets to contaminants in the air we breathe. They can even be by-products of the body’s natural processes, such as lactic acid. By incorporating regular massages into your fitness agenda, you can help your body eliminate these toxins
A mental boost
While the muscles are often regarded as receiving the most benefit, there is also a psychological advantage to massages. The mental affects can come in the two different types of both chemical and emotional healing. Together, these benefits help the mind respond and function properly to ensure wellness in its entirety.
Chemically, your brain is apt to boost serotonin and dopamine, which are hormones within the body that make you feel good. During the process of the massage, you are able to relax and enjoy the experience, allowing for these naturally secreted chemicals to boost your mood. This is a natural and healthy way to increase confidence and initiative. But that’s not all it does, since it is also known to lower the stress hormone cortisol. Both of these effects combined will not only affect your mood, but also increase your body’s resistance to negativity.
As your body experiences these positive effects, you will also find yourself in a better emotional state. A body that feels great along with a mind that functions clearly provide you with the exact tools you need to remain positive. Emotionally, you are also put in a far better state of mind that will allow you to focus and achieve your goals. It isn’t just because you experience the internal changes secreted in your brain, it comes from a conglomeration of effects that result from the body’s relaxation and increased healing that causes your muscles and mind to respond well to during and after massages.
For the active person, regular massages can prove to be a beneficial asset to any fitness program. You can increase the body’s healing abilities and overall function, while at the same time positively affecting your mind. Throughout the body, the massage provides a great number of advantages that will help you achieve overall well-being.