How Long After Botox Can You Workout? The Ultimate Guide

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Friday, December 8, 2023 at 9:26pm UTC
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If you’re wondering how long after Botox can you workout, you should know that experts suggest avoiding strenuous exercise for at least four hours.

Most people get Botox to improve their body image and, subsequently, their mental and physical health. Exercise is also integral to self-esteem and well-being, which can make it difficult to press pause on your workout routine.

However, avoiding certain types of physical activity post-Botox injections is crucial for optimal results. We’ll explain why in this guide.

Why Can’t You Exercise After Botox?

You can’t exercise after Botox injections because it increases blood flow, puts pressure on the injection site, and may invert your head. All of these things can negatively affect your results. Here’s how.

Your Blood Flow Increases

Exercise, specifically aerobic exercise (AKA cardio), increases your heart rate and blood flow. Higher blood flow is excellent for the body. It supplies fresh oxygen to muscles, cleanses the kidneys, and improves your health.

Unfortunately, blood flow does not have the same benefits for your Botox results. Exercising too soon after your procedure can cause the injection to migrate to other areas of your face.

If this happens, you may not see robust results in the target area. Worse, the migrating botulinum toxin may cause temporary paralysis of facial or neck muscles you may not have wanted to target.

Another potential consequence of increased blood flow after Botox injections is a higher risk of certain side effects. You may be more prone to bruising and swelling at the injection site if you workout too soon after your appointment.

You Might Invert Your Head

Inverting your head means hanging it upside down, something that commonly occurs during certain types of exercise and stretching regimens. Yoga is an example of a workout that commonly causes head inversion.

Importantly, inversion isn’t always a bad thing. In fact, experts suggest that inversion exercises can improve your spinal health, boost flexibility, strengthen your core, and enhance lymphatic system function.

However, inversion exercises should be avoided after Botox. In addition to their many benefits, they can increase blood flow to your face. As we’ve mentioned, increased pressure on your face may cause the Botox injection to migrate.

You May Put Pressure on Your Face

When most people exercise, they sweat. To keep that sweat from getting in their eyes, you may wipe it away. The motion of wiping away sweat puts pressure on the face, which could impact your results.

Additionally, exercises like weight lifting may cause you to clench your jaw or tighten your facial muscles. These movements strain your face, further impacting the injection site.

Your doctor will recommend avoiding putting pressure on the injection site for at least four hours after your procedure. For one, pressure may cause pain or discomfort to the sensitive area.

The other reason putting pressure on your face is a bad idea is that it can cause the Botox injectable to move around. You may then experience less robust results or temporary paralysis of non-target areas.

How Long After Botox Can You Workout?

You can workout as soon as four hours after Botox, though most doctors recommend waiting at least 24 hours. Some practitioners urge even more caution, recommending that patients wait to exercise for up to one week.

Others approach post-Botox exercise on a case-by-case basis. People with typically high levels of physical activity may be able to resume exercise earlier than individuals of more modest fitness levels.

Why? People who exercise frequently tend to have higher metabolic rates, and metabolism influences the longevity of your Botox results. The higher your metabolism is, the shorter your results will last.

With that in mind, people with lower fitness levels can typically return to exercise faster than highly active individuals. People with higher fitness levels may want to consider waiting longer to return to exercise.

If you absolutely must exercise before this waiting period is up, scroll down to learn, ‘What Kind of Exercise Can You Do After Botox?’ Or keep reading below for more answers to frequently asked questions about Botox and exercise.

How Long After Botox Can You Do Cardio?

You can do light cardio as soon as 24 hours after Botox, no matter your fitness level. Light cardio should not involve bouncing, explosive movements, or inverting your head.

People with lower fitness levels can safely return to high-intensity cardio workouts after 48 hours unless directed otherwise by a doctor.

Athletes and other individuals who typically workout regularly should not return to rigorous cardio for at least three more days or up to one week after the initial 24-hour waiting period.

How Long After Botox Can You Lift Weights?

You can lift weights 24 hours after Botox. However, remember that increasing your metabolic rate may cause your results to fade quicker. Lifting weights increases lean muscle mass, which naturally boosts metabolism.

Again, people of higher fitness levels may want to wait longer than 24 hours to resume their normal resistance training routine. This is especially true if you have a vigorous workout planned.

If you are concerned about negatively affecting your Botox results by exercising too early, talk to your doctor. Together, you can come up with the best strategy for resuming your workouts safely.

Does Exercise Make Botox Wear Off Quicker?

Yes, exercise may make Botox wear off quicker, even if you adhere to the waiting period recommended by your doctor. However, not all types of exercise affect the longevity of your results, and this does not happen to everyone.

Botox is not permanent. Injections typically last an average of three to four months, though some people experience longer-lasting results, and others must receive a top-up sooner.

Participating in intense, metabolism-boosting exercises like high-intensity interval training (HIIT) or hot yoga may make your results wear off faster. If you are worried about this effect, talk to your doctor about the best exercises for making Botox last longer.

What Will Happen if You Exercise Too Soon After Botox?

If you exercise too soon after Botox, you may increase your risk for certain side effects, reduce the injection’s effectiveness, or cause unintended temporary paralysis to other areas of your face.

Learn more about the risks of exercising too soon after Botox next.

Increased Risk of Side Effects

Doctors would not administer Botox if the potential benefits didn’t outweigh the risks. Still, Botox comes with possible side effects, especially if you don’t get your injections from a licensed and experienced Botox provider.

The potential risks of Botox include:

  • Bruising or swelling at the injection site
  • Pain at the injection site
  • Headache
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Droopy or crooked eyelids
  • A crooked smile
  • Drooling
  • Watery eyes
  • Dry eyes
  • Injection site infections

Exercising after Botox can also increase the risk of certain side effects. For example, higher blood flow to the area may cause more bruising or swelling, even if you get your injections done by a quality provider.

Touching or getting sweat on your face may also raise the risk of pain or, worse, infections at the injection site.

Less Robust Results

Botox can be expensive. Failing to follow your doctor’s aftercare guidelines- such as not exercising for four to 24 hours- may compromise your results, providing a lower return on your investment.

Increasing your blood flow, inverting your head, and putting pressure on your face can cause Botox to migrate away from the injection site. That leaves less of the injectable behind to relax the muscles you want to target.

As a consequence, your fine lines and wrinkles may not fill out completely. Or even if they do, the injection might take longer to work. Another potential outcome is that your results won’t last as long.

Unintended Temporary Paralysis

In addition to the more common side effects we listed above, Botox has the potential for other rare but concerning symptoms. These symptoms can happen when Botox migrates away from the target area.

Rare but serious side effects of Botox migration include:

  • Muscle weakness
  • Vision issues
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Breathing problems
  • Loss of bladder control

Exercise can make these rare symptoms more likely. Increased blood flow, inverting your head, and touching the target area all enhance the risk of the injectable spreading.

What Kind of Exercise Can You Do After Botox?

After Botox, you can do facial exercises directly after Botox and light, non-inverting body exercises as soon as four hours after your injection. Avoid activities that increase your heart rate for at least 24 hours.

The good news is that you can workout before getting Botox. If you exercise every day and don’t want to miss a session, get in some cardio or strength training before your appointment.

Then, you can start to incorporate the following light exercises after your Botox procedure.

Facial Exercises

Your doctor may recommend facial exercises after Botox. These exercises are safe and may even make your Botox results appear sooner. In one study, 68% of Botox recipients reported a faster onset and more robust results due to facial exercises.

Facial exercises may include smiling, frowning, and moving your brows. Avoid touching your face, though, as any pressure on the area may impact your results or raise the risk of certain side effects.

The only time you should not do facial exercises is if your doctor recommends otherwise, so ensure you ask about this if it is not mentioned in your aftercare instructions.

Light Walking

Light walking is an excellent choice for staying active after getting Botox. You can resume this activity directly after your appointment unless your doctor recommends otherwise.

What is light walking exactly? Most people walk casually at a pace of 3 MPH. So, keep your speed under 3 MPH to prevent your heart rate from increasing too much.

Keep in mind that you may not feel up to light walking right after your appointment. Many people experience headaches after Botox. Take an over-the-counter pain reliever and resume light walking when you’re ready.

Yoga Without Inversions

Inversions force your head below your heart, causing blood to flow toward your face and skull. Your doctor will recommend keeping your head upright for at least four hours after Botox.

That rules out some yoga poses, but not all. Standing yoga poses like mountain, tree, chair, eagle, and big toe are okay. So are planks, seated forward folds, and ‘wall dogs.’

You can also find modifications for your favorite inverted yoga poses. Check out this guide to yoga inversion alternatives for inspiration. You could even come up with your own modifications as long as you keep your head above your heart.

Other Things to Avoid After Botox

Your doctor will recommend that you sit up straight for the first four hours after your appointment. You will also be instructed to refrain from intensive exercise for at least 24 hours.

There are many other activities to avoid after Botox besides exercise and inverting your head. Your doctor will likely also recommend steering clear of the following for best results:

  • Laying down
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Consuming excess amounts of caffeine
  • Rubbing the injection site
  • Putting pressure on the injection site
  • Taking a hot shower
  • Taking a bath
  • Using a tanning bed
  • Getting a spray tan
  • Using a sauna
  • Exposing the injection site to sunlight or sunlamps
  • Exposing the injection site to very cold or hot temperatures
  • Wearing makeup
  • Using tretinoin or retinoid
  • Sleeping on your face
  • Getting a facial procedure
  • Flying on an airplane
  • Wearing a bathing cap
  • Getting your brows waxed
  • Getting your brows threaded
  • Tweezing your brows

Of course, you don’t have to avoid these activities forever. You can resume facials after two weeks and sleep with your face on the pillow after a few days. You can start wearing makeup 24 hours after getting Botox.

Your doctor should give you detailed instructions for how long to avoid other activities on this list.

Schedule a Botox Appointment in St. Pete, FL

So, how long after Botox can you workout? You may resume light, non-inversion exercises as soon as four hours after your injection, though 24 hours is the gold standard. Wait up to one week for intense exercise to be safe.

Are you searching for Botox injections in St. Pete? St. Pete Wellness and Medspa is a state-of-the-art facility offering injectables, lasering, and more. Schedule your appointment for a consultation with our Botox experts.