Thursday, January 20, 2011

Why are my muscles SOOOO sore??

Yep it's a New Year....Break out the Sore Muscles!!!
At the beginning of each year I see clients in January that have changed their routine, started a brand new one, or perhaps are doing something different all together.  
Each time you change the type of stress or training you apply to your muscles, they have to adapt to these new changes.  Very frequently when pushing your body in a new direction you will have extreme soreness.  Things like shampooing your hair will take on a new level of effort.  (I'm sure you've all experienced it)  Walking up or heaven forbid going down stairs you find yourself hanging on to the handrail for fear that the soreness in your muscles won't allow you to continue to the next step. 

This phenomenon is know as DOMS 
     - Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness
24-48 hrs after a workout is when the severity of DOMS sets in.  

Some of us laugh about it, because we know it's coming.  Some of us wonder if perhaps we did something to actually injure ourselves.  The fact of the matter is your muscle tissue is going through a breakdown and building process.  The mild muscle strain that takes place when starting into a new routing creates microscopic tears in the muscle fibers.  There is an inflammatory process that develops to help those muscles heal.  The entire chain reaction process that takes place on a cellular level (I won't bore you with the details) is helping your muscles to heal and develop into faster, stronger fibers that have more endurance.  
The DOMS that you experience may be the most severe a couple of days after the workout.  It should lessen as the days go by. 
If you are experiencing DOMS, the best thing to do is keep moving.  Do moderate exercise, hop on a bike trainer, walk on the treadmill if you can't get outside.  A swim is a great way to help reduce the effects of DOMS.  
If you know you're going to start a new routine,  have a massage scheduled for that same day right after you get done with your workout.  If you do it the same day, the effects will be far less.  Also, make sure to stretch really well when you complete your workouts.  Skipping the stretching time at the end of a workout is like not eating breakfast.  It is a necessity!  DO IT!!

IMPORTANT - if you've got sore muscles, don't give up on your workout plan, drink plenty of water, and eat healthy well balanced meals, (Stay AWAY from simple carbs -sugars- They increase the inflammation in your tissues).  Eat lots of veggies and protein...stay AWAY from sugars, breads, starches.  If you're craving sugar, you might not have enough protein.  All of these things will help you be on your way to a healthier, stronger, faster you.  

Last note on DOMS, If you're really sore, you might just have to modify your workouts for a couple of days, then you'll be back into your routine stronger than ever. Whatever you do....DON'T GIVE UP!!

Are you having trouble getting into a routine?  Need some people to help hold you accountable to your workouts or just plain bored of working out alone?  
Why not join a club?  DSM TRI is only $40 for an entire year.  The product discounts make up for the cost of membership very quickly, not to mention free group training sessions hosted by Zoom Performance Training.  Join DSM TRI Club today to get linked in to activities going on around the DSM Metro!

Have questions about muscle injuries or soreness, ask!  I'd love to help!

1 comment:

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