When discussing the afterglows of gamma-ray bursts analytically, it is usually assumed that the external shock is always ultra-relativisitc, with the bulk Lorentz factor much larger than 1. However, we show that the deceleration of the external shock is actually very quick. The afterglow may typically enter the nonrelativistic phase in several days to teens of days, and may even enter the deep Newtonian phase in tens of days to several months. One thus should be careful in using those familiar analytical expressions that are derived only under the ultra-relativistic assumption. To explain the observed afterglows that typically last for a few weeks to several months, we need to consider the dynamics and radiation in the nonrelativisitic phase.