Exercise Before Opioids


One of the most common things on the shelf that athletes and fitness enthusiasts reach for after a workout isn’t protein, it’s Vitamin I, or Ibuprofen.

Commonly used for headaches, migraines, and muscle pain, Ibuprofen has become a crutch for many in the fitness industry as a way to get through a workout or alleviate the post-workout soreness.

New studies suggest that taking Ibuprofen for muscle pain will not only fail to alleviate inflammation but it may negatively impact recovery and your results.

Pain Killers and Exercise: What Science Has to Say

It is understandable why so many reach for Ibuprofen just before or following a workout: No one likes dealing with pain. However, the short-term gratification you receive from taking Ibuprofen or similar pain killers is overshadowed by potential long-term consequences.

Recent studies suggest that while your muscles may feel better, your kidneys are the ones suffering. Marathon runners tested for creatinine levels post-race after Ibuprofen consumptions showed alarmingly high levels. The elevated levels of creatinine point to kidney stress and damage.

Another study on mice resulted in impaired recovery post-workout. The muscle mass of the mice was not able to recover properly or become stronger in the way that is normal with post-workout recovery and gains.

How to Proper Promote Recovery

While it’s tempting to reach for that bottle of Ibuprofen or similar pain killer, try these all-natural and proven methods first.

  • Perform a low-impact workout such as walking or swimming
  • Perform a series of dynamic and static stretches post warm-up
  • Apply ice for 15-minute intervals throughout the day to the sore area
  • Drink tea that is made with ginger, turmeric, and cinnamon, all of which are natural anti-inflammatories
  • Get a sports massage or deep tissue massage