yeah, hydration is critical, great point.
re ice/heat, lots of ways to do it. What I'll usually do (and wait at least 3-4 days after the initial injury to do this, before then, just ice) is get a heating pad and wrap it around the injured area and use that for 15 minutes, then I'll ice the area for 15 minutes, then I'll heat it again for 15 minutes. Then afterwards, I get my massage stick and work the muscle, starting superficially and gently and progressively going deeper with slow, smooth strokes.
hope that helps.