Combatting Soreness After a Run – Things To Consider
I have a treat for you today on the blog. This is a topic that has hit home with me, both in running and in weight training. In fact, I am battling it this very day!
It is combatting soreness and as you know I’ve been hitting the gym and upping my weights with my trainer, Tammy. There really is not a week that goes by that I am not sore somewhere if not everywhere on my body! Thanks, Tammy! So when I stumbled on this opportunity, I knew it would be something you would relate to as well.
I would like to introduce you to Rachel Stires. Rachel is a media relations representative for Orangetheory Fitness. In her spare time, she enjoys writing, hiking, and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. She no doubt has experienced soreness and has some great tips for us in combatting soreness.
I always feel so accomplished after I work out, even though I admittedly feel exhausted at the same time. My limbs usually feel like limp spaghetti noodles, and my heart still feels like it’s beating quickly even after I’m done working out.
Signs of a job, or workout, well done, right? If that’s the case, why do I feel horribly weak the day of, and like someone hit me with a train the morning after? It doesn’t go away, either. The more I move around, the more pain I seem to feel.
To tell you the truth, this soreness often leaves me avoiding working out the next day, or the day after that.
It turns out that this morning after soreness might have a name; DOMS. DOMS stands for delayed onset muscle soreness and is a condition that can often leave you feeling like warmed-over death the day after an intense workout.
Before and During your workout
While my focus will mostly be on post workout, I wanted to touch on what you can do before and during your workout as well to reduce stress on your body.
- Make sure you are well rested before your workout. Doctors recommend that people get an average of 7 hours of sleep each night. This can help reduce stress, and it encourages your body to recover.
- Stay hydrated throughout the day before your workout. If you are low on fluids before your workout, it can affect your performance. You could also risk dehydration, which can make you feel even worse. If you feel like you haven’t gotten enough water before a workout, I would recommend drinking at least 8 oz of water an hour or so before you work out.
- Push yourself, but not too hard. It’s important to test your limits when working out because it can help you achieve new personal records, goals, and muscle growth. However, there is definitely a fine line between achieving excellence and causing injury or over-exertion. I would recommend writing down any exercises you do, the length, and the weight used. Then see how you feel when doing the workout. If it’s easy, push yourself a little harder. If it’s difficult, that’s great, but don’t make it so difficult that you’re overwhelmed with what you’re doing.
After your workout
So you’ve just completed that long run, or completed your last set, and your workout is officially over. What now?
- Make time to cool down and stretch. It’s important to loosen up and alleviate tension in your muscles, and it can help you prevent DOMS and further soreness because it gives your muscles time to recover. Muscles can heal due to the circulation of the blood.
- Replenish your nutrients. Whether you do this through eating or drinking is up to you. Many people will drink protein shakes after working out, and this is definitely a viable option. Doctors recommend getting 20 to 50 grams of protein post-workout. You can also eat a protein or carbohydrate-rich meal, which will aid in recovery.
- Take a bath. Whether you decide to take a cold or warm shower is up to personal preference, and just how sore you are. Most people will choose a warm bath or shower because of lighter soreness, while cold showers or baths are usually reserved for more serious injury.
What happens when it’s so bad you can’t move correctly? Whether this means hobbling downstairs like each step pains you immensely, or struggling to get up out of a chair, there are some options if you’re feeling particularly crappy after a workout. You can consider getting a massage or taking a day to rest instead of working out.
No matter what you choose to do, it’s important to find a pre and post-workout ritual that works for you and helps your body get the rest it needs. That way, you can avoid soreness or injury, and you’re ready to hit the gym again.
Talk to me, what is one thing you do before a hard workout?
What about afterwards when you’re done?
Do you have an Orange Theory gym in your town?
Thank you again, Rachel, for this guest post.