What Everyone Should Know About Muscle Soreness

Everyone feels it. It creeps up on you after about 24 hours. It’s the wretched soreness that comes after your workout. The clinical name is Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness, or DOMS. To some, it feels great, knowing that you got a good workout in. To others, it just annoying pain. Either way, there is some information you should know about DOMS.

  • Why Do We Get Sore?

There are two reasons why we feel sore. The first soreness comes from a buildup of lactic acid. The second comes from tears from the muscles.

When we work out, we deprive our muscles of oxygen. Because the lack of oxygen, an acid called lactic acid forms in our muscle. Our bodies natural dispose of lactic acid, but it takes time. Typically, the more lactic acid build-up, the sorer one may feel, but not always.

Most times, DOMS subsides after about a day. But for extreme beginners or when you do a new activity, the soreness may be prolonged to 3-5 days.

The prolonged burn comes from tears in the muscles. Your body naturally rips muscle fibers when you lift weights and repairs it. That’s how we get stronger and bigger.

If you stop working out for a month and start-up again, you’ll feel DOMS again since your muscles have forgotten the best way to use those groups.

  • If I don’t get sore anymore, did I workout incorrectly?

No, despite what most people think, DOMS is a poor indicator of your workout. ┬áThe information you can obtain from DOMS is that you have done something different or workout’d a muscle group differently. Your body was not accustomed to the type of exercise you did yesterday (whether it be a new exercise altogether or a different intensity or different type of training: strength vs hypertrophy vs endurance).

The best indicator of a workout is how much you’ve progressed. Depending on what your goals are, you should measure in what matters to you. It could be that you ran that extra mile or you ran faster or you ran for longer or your ran more intensely. Or maybe you lifted more weight or you lifted more repetitions or even if you lifted the same weight, but it was much easier. You know your body and your body will show the signs.

  • Should I workout sore muscles?

The best way to get rid of the lactic acid buildup in your muscles is to do light intensity steady state for that individual muscle group. If you worked out your legs and you walk lightly for an hour, your body is more prone to disposing that lactic acid than if you were to wait.

You should avoid overworking your muscles. If they’re sore, then I would advise not working that muscle group again so that your muscles can have ample time to recover.

  • Stretching is important.

Another way you can prevent your body from getting sore is by stretching after your workout. You can spread the lactic acid throughout your muscles so that the concentration is dispersed and other cells around your body can work to get rid of that lactic acid.

Conclusion:

  1. DOMS goes away after your muscles get used to your workouts.
  2. Do Ballistic Movements prior to workouts to the muscle groups you’ll be working out.
  3. Properly and amply stretch your groups.
  4. Do a cool-down period where you lightly workout that group post-workout.
  5. Exercise regularly and adopt a more active lifestyle.
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