We’ve all been there. One day we’re feeling a little extra, we hit the gym, and we say to ourselves; “I’m going to kill this workout”. And so we do! And then we stay in bed for the following couple of days, barely able to move a muscle huffing and puffing about the excruciating pain that we suffer from!
You’ve also probably been hit by that muscle soreness the first time you went to the gym, or on resuming exercise after a long absence. It kind of makes you dread the next encounter with the gym.. Well, maybe it feels good to have sore muscles after a workout, makes you feel you’ve really killed it.
But walking like a penguin every time after hitting the gym? Doesn’t sound too appealing!
What’s Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS)?
The feeling you get when your muscles are too sore and stiff to move after a loaded workout session is known as Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness. We’ll try to not get too scientific, but that usually happens due to two reasons: accumulation of lactic acid, and micro-trauma to the muscle filaments. Lactic acid accumulates when your muscles don’t get enough oxygen.
How To Recover Faster From DOMS
It’s a common practice to hit the gym again after experiencing DOMS, to keep the muscles moving. It does help to a certain extent, as it keeps the muscles warm. There are other ways to avoid or at least minimize the feeling of soreness, such as:
● Warming Up and Cooling Down Properly
Warming up properly before jumping into exercise and taking the time to stretch into cool down, is found to reduce the feelings of DOMS greatly. That’s because you take the time to prepare and warm your muscles to get into a gel-like state that flows easily, instead of its rigid state of being cold. As for cooling down, you’re stretching the muscles so they’d ease into their natural length, instead of shrinking on cooling down.
● Alternative Hot-and-cold Showers
Alternative hot/cold showers, (or a hot water bottle and ice packs) increases the blood flow to your sore muscles, through subsequent vasodilation and vasoconstriction. The increased blood flow will get more oxygen and nutrients to the muscles, speeding up the recovery process.
● Using Agents That Soothe Muscle Aches and Joint Pains
Rubbing hot/cold creams, menthol gels, using CBD oil, and
massaging your muscles with aromatic oils, can all soothe your muscle aches and reduce the pain. Every Day Optimal is a great place to start looking up different kinds of CBD oil, you’ll be able to find the exact one that is suited to what kind of pain you may be experiencing.
● Wearing Compression Clothing
Wearing compression clothing has been shown to increase blood circulation, reduce the impact on the muscles, and help in speedy recovery from DOMS.
5 Post-Workout Compression Clothes To Help Ease The Pain
● Compression Pants
Wearing lower body compression clothing reduces oscillation of muscles on impact. The higher the oscillation frequency, the higher the chance of feeling sore and getting injured. According to a research published in the Journal of Sports Science, “track athletes who wore lower-body compression garments reduced muscle impact on landing by 27%”.
● Quads & Thighs Compression
If you’ve overdone it with the squats, deadlifts and lunges, these will be of great help for with your quads and thighs after leg days.
● Calf Sleeves
You can wear full compression pants, or opt for the area of most soreness. Wearing calf sleeves will help increase circulation, help you perform better, and even ease the soreness.
Was it the triceps and biceps turn to play? Wearing compression sleeves might be a good idea to help regain daily use of your hands and arms.
● Long sleeve top
When it’s the upper body day and you’re hitting chest, back, arms, and shoulders, you’ll lose track of which group of muscles exactly are hurting you the most. Wearing a long sleeve top in this case will give you multiple solutions in one.