Ever wondered why you are at your sorest 24 to 48 hours after a workout? Ever left the personal training session feeling great only to feel tight and stiff after 6 to 8 hours? Remember those times you went “Yep that was a tough legs session yesterday.”
The reason behind this is Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness or DOMS, which occurs anywhere in the body which has been exposed to unfamiliar, unaccustomed, intense physical activity or eccentric contractions. Eccentric muscle contractions are where the muscle is contracting while lengthening like running downhill.
So what is DOMS?
DOMS is caused by micro tears in the myofibrils (muscle fibres) resulting in micro-trauma. This increase the inflammatory response altering intramuscular fluid and electrolytes, causing a dull ache anywhere from 6 to 48 hours in the muscles.
Reduce the after effects easily.
There are some simple ways to decrease the effects of DOMS after a tough workout.
- Active Rest
Nothing is better than rest, promoting tissue healing and recovery. If you have worked to failure you should wait 72 hours before working to failure again, however we recommend light or different exercise as recovery such as swimming, walking or a easy gym workout.
This can prevent the cycle of progression to DOMS. There are several different stretching techniques, you could try the different ones to see which type works best for you. For more information on stretching see some of our other blogs or Youtube ‘stretching’. Try typing in dynamic stretching (typically done before a workout), isometric stretching and contract-relax stretching.
May reduces the amount of inflammation that occurs and help promote a faster recovery. Typically an ice bath is the way to get the full body anti-inflammatory benefits. You could also try a cold shower.
Increases blood flow to aching muscles to promote healing and removal of waste products within the muscle tissue like lactic acid and scar tissue. Typically it is a lighter, non treatment masssage. Our Myotherpay team can help with this if you are interested in trying it.
Natural remedies or anti-inflammatory medication can reduce the soreness after a workout. Some natural remedies include; tumeric, cinammon and magnesium just to name a few. For more information on these we suggest you talk to a good nutritionist or dietitian on how to get these foods naturally into your diet, it’s yummier that way!
If you have any post workout tips we would love to hear about them, feel free to post below!