Unusual Teas for Exercise Gains
I am extremely keen on tea, and I am not just talking about your regular out-of-the-box-with-a-tag-attached varieties. I am talking flowers, herbs, traditional teas and crushed herbs. So before your next workout consider one of these beverages!
If you find yourself stiff before or after exercise, (and especially if that pain is causing you to avoid a workout), consider a rosehip tea. Rosehip increases the amount of synovial fluid the body produces which keeps cartilage lubricated and packed full of nutrients. This will allow you to exercise more often without the joint pains. As a side benefit it’s also fantastic for immunity so you can avoid picking up the germs you might find in the gym!
Most ideal to be drunk directly brewed from the dried flower itself, Chamomile has amazing after effects on the body. It’s a natural anti-spasmodic and is known as the “herbal aspirin” for its pain relieving effects. Not only can it help to give you a better night’s sleep (I have covered the importance of rest in a previous article) but it can settle the stomach and reduce pain from inflammation associated with exercise. If you get a little nauseated after a big cardio session, this might be the tea for you too!
Fresh ginger, ginger bark or ginger root are all fantastic steeped in water to make a tasty tea. This is especially good for exercise during the winter months when colds and flus are everywhere. When you have a hard training session, your immune system is temporarily compromised making it easier to get sick during that season. Ginger boosts and bolsters the immune system and heats the blood allowing your body to get back on track, keeping you healthy as you train. In addition it will increase your appetite if you struggle to eat efficiently after exercise or struggle with nausea.
More commonly used in foods like curries, turmeric has also been around for centuries being used as one of the best anti-inflammatories naturally grown around the world. For those wishing to lose weight you’ll be pleased to know that Turmeric improves the body’s ability to digest fats! It also reduces that pesky gas and bloating and nasal congestion that people often associate with a big workout like running.
A little less unusual but important nonetheless is our good old fashioned green tea. Packed full of antioxidants that fill the body with all the goodies we need to be healthy it also may assist with energy for your workout. It can be drunk cold or warm and is effective for a pre and post workout beverage depending on when you feel you need the energy kick!
As always if you have any concerns check with your doctor about the use of herbs and teas in your diet, but for normally healthy people a good cup of tea can help with your exercise regime because it’s so easily absorbed and digested. Give these a try and let me know which is your favourite!