We will all be sore at one point or another. Whether it's at the beginning of your training or it's still happening and you've been training for a while. Maybe you don't even feel like you get sore anymore, and that upsets you!
Listen, it’s okay whether you do or you don't get muscle soreness. What matters is how you manage it and knowing when something isn’t right.
Why Do We Get Sore?
Simply put, if your body is sore, it's because it's doing things that it's not used to doing. Maybe you've just begun training and you are sore after every single workout. Well, it's going to happen for a while until your body starts to adapt to what you are trying to make it do. The soreness you feel is called Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). Basically, after a workout your muscles have been damaged and the soreness you feel is the muscles experiencing swelling and inflammation. Don’t worry though! DOMS is completely normal and typically occurs 6-8 hours after a training session and peaks around the second day after. It will go away with time and the right care.
Recognizing Unhealthy Muscle Soreness
While muscle soreness is a normal part of any workout, it’s important to know when something isn’t right. After you work out, you shouldn’t be in pain. When we are in pain, our bodies are trying to tell us that something is wrong.
For example, stress fractures are a common problem among exercisers who over train or do too much too quickly. If you experience soreness that doesn’t go away, is sharp, or is accompanied by dizziness and trouble breathing, stop exercising and consult your doctor right away.
Always talk to your doctor before starting a new exercise regime and find a personal trainer who can help you work out safely. Your body will thank you for it!
Managing Muscle Soreness
Everyone is different though, as some people are completely obliterated the day after. Trying to sit down on the toilet? Nope. Trying to walk up stairs? Oh heck no. Even the easiest of daily activities seem like such a struggle.
Being this sore doesn't mean that you just get to chill out and not move (even though that's all we want to do). Honestly, we need to be moving. No, you don't have to go do some crazy workout to get rid of muscle soreness. You won't fully feel better after anyway. But steady, gentle movements can do wonders in managing post-workout muscle soreness. Keep your body moving with workouts like:
Your muscle fibers have been torn and broken up and they need to recover. Staying moving will get blood flowing to these areas to help speed up that recovery process. Does this feel good? Nope, not really, but it works. Don't expect to be 100% back to it, but know that you're doing something good for yourself by moving. All of this recovery is helping make you stronger and gain some lean muscle mass. So actually, there's no problem with being sore besides the achy feeling. All of that in turn helps with weight loss, stabilization, and strength.
Change Up Your Routine
For those of you who feel like they never get sore anymore, I have some advice for you: Change. It. Up. Your body is used to what you've been doing! It has adapted! And if you're doing the same workouts every time you're in the gym, don't expect to have much muscle soreness.
If you want that feeling, change your exercises, your volume and workload, and movements. Easy as that! Do something new that you haven't done before. I bet you'll feel sore in areas that you didn't think you could be anymore. So don't be upset, it's an easy fix. New things create new feelings. Plus, you should never be comfortable in a workout, if you're uncomfortable and pushing yourself every time, you will most likely be sore every time. Don't fall into the "I don't want to sweat" or "I don't want to be sore" mindsets. These things are making a better and stronger you!