Everyone has worked out and felt as stiff as a board the next day. Sometimes, it can take days before the discomfort subsides naturally, making it harder to exercise at the same intensity. For many people, this is a healthy sign because it means they have pushed themselves to the limit.
Unfortunately, this is just one of the myths that surround muscle soreness that encourages people to avoid essential processes, such as preventing pain after a workout. Of course, to do that, you’ve got to know more about the falsehoods that are causing you to be uncomfortable in the first place.
DOMS Is A Bad Thing
You can see where this comes from because the Delayed Onset of Muscle Soreness doesn’t sound healthy. DOMS is tiny tears in your muscles that need repairing. Otherwise, the discomfort continues to last for much longer. However, it’s not as traumatic as many people believe. After a while, your body can build up a resistance, especially if you take action to prevent the sensation from occurring. This includes everything from eating a macrobiotic diet – Denny Waxman has more – to cooling down thoroughly. The latter is critical as it promotes blood flow to the muscles and eliminates lactic acid.
The Fitter You Are, The Less It Hurts
There is some truth to this because your body is very intelligent. As a result, it will react to your workout routine to ensure there is less trauma happening under the hood. But, the fact is that a person’s genetics are at play, too. Just like some people have fast or slow-twitch muscle fibers, others are low or high-responders to soreness. SBS says that the latter makes you more acutely aware of the pain, compared to low and non-responders. Sadly, there isn’t much you can do as your setup means you will feel the after-effects.
Stretching Stops The Pain
No, it doesn’t. While stretching cools you down and allows your body to recuperate, the cooling down process doesn’t prevent injuries according to this NCBI journal entry from 2011. If anything, it can make the likelihood of injuries higher. So, how do you prevent soreness after a workout session? The trick is to change your routine gradually. When you do this, you give your muscles more time to relax as they aren’t constantly overloaded. Using different groups shares the load more equally, meaning DOMS and soreness should be less intense.
No Pain, No Gain
You can’t find a more cliche saying in the whole of the health and wellbeing industries. In fact, in the studio, we often say, if it hurts, stop. Pushing yourself to the limit isn’t a sign that you’re going to reap the rewards in the future, though. You might go the other way. After all, soreness is a poor indicator of muscle growth and progression. You shouldn’t try the same exercise three days later and stop because your muscles have failed. It’s all about progression, which means it’s essential to judge your journey based on trackable, proven outcomes.
Do you believe in any of the above? Will you change your outlook now you understand more about them?