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I love fitness and I love working out. I even kind of like it when I feel sore; it makes me feel like I am actually making positive changes in my body. When my muscles are sore, I usually do not want to do anything except lay in bed a little longer. But the best thing to do is get moving. Here are a few exercises I use when my muscles are sore.

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1. Yoga: Yoga is one of the most beneficial forms of exercise out there for any fitness level. Regardless of whether you are a marathon runner, weightlifter, CrossFit guru or exercise novice, you will feel the benefits of yoga immediately. I love to do a few sun salutations while the coffee is brewing, just to get my body awake for the day. A full hour of yoga can truly give your muscles the stretch that they really need. Also, it will get the blood moving through which helps rid you of that lactic acid buildup which is really what is causing the soreness in the first place.

>> Check out our Yoga Lingo guide to learn yoga at your own pace! 

2. Walking: Take a brisk walk or a meandering stroll; either one will help loosen up those sore muscles. Again, anything that gets the blood flowing through your body will help move those muscle aches out a bit faster. Walking is a fantastic recovery from the soreness of running a race. You are using the same motions, just at a much gentler pace.

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3. Pilates: Most Pilates mat work is done lying down of the floor. If you have never tried it, you should! Benefits include a mind/body connection, stronger core and learning to lengthen the muscles as you strengthen them. It is a gentle, non-impact workout that can be intense if you want it to be.

>> Read more: 4 Pilates Moves You Need to Know

4. Meditation: This is an exercise for your MIND. If you are super sore, perhaps you need a rest day. Take the time you usually work out and make it a time for quiet. Find a guided meditation through endless resources online or simply sit quietly and listen to the sounds of your own breathing intertwined with the sounds of nature. Meditation is an exercise, in my opinion. It’s one that takes some practice. Try to fit it in for a few minutes every day!

If your muscles are very sore, you also need to consider your hydration. Drink lots of water to help flush that pesky lactic acid out. Again, the tendency is to want to stay still and not do anything at all. The truth of the matter is that you simply need to get moving in one way or another. If it is not your official rest day, you may just need to stay on track for your scheduled workout. Soreness, as long as it does not feel like an injury, can be a sign that you are getting closer to your goals. Listen to your body. It’s the only place you have to live!