What's the most important aspect of growing stronger and bigger? It's training until failure and pushing through the limits. But in pursuit to push through the physical limitations we train hard which lead to soreness and muscle pain.
Post workout soreness is also known as DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness), it's a muscle pain and soreness that is felt after a good intense workout.
Muscle soreness has always been considered a trademark of good workout but experiencing post-workout soreness for days is no fun. Training until failure is important but what's more important is the recovery that not many people pay emphasis to.
Why do we experience muscle soreness?
Post workout soreness (DOMS) not only feels irritating but also decreases the workout performance of the next day. Most of the bloggers and youtubers are paying too much of emphasis on tips and techniques to help you lift heavier but not many are talking about the post workout routines to help you reduce soreness and improve physical performance.
DOMS occurs due to the microtears in the muscle tissues in response to intense training- According to American College Of Sports Medicine. These micro tears are very important to grow stronger but what's more important is healing of those micro tears.
Training to achieve peak performance is something every bodybuilder and pro-athlete do on a regular basis. But consistently training through the DOMS may lead to workout injuries and decrease in strength.
Post workout soreness may sustain for 48-72 hours but correct recovery techniques can bring down the recovery period to as short as 12-hours.
Tips to reduce post-workout soreness
Professional athletes have been using a wide variety of techniques to speedup the workout recovery and reduce symptoms of DOMS.
DOMS can be controlled in the following ways:
- Supplementation: Feeding your body the right nutrition helps in better recovery. Supplementing with right vitamins, minerals and macronutrients can help in speeding up the recovery process.
- Post-workout recovery routine: This is something that most of the people are neglecting, post-workout recovery routine includes many routines that helps in clearing the lactic buildup and improving the blood flow towards target muscle tissues for accelerated recovery.
Let's start with our top 9 tips to reduce workout soreness.
1- Whey protein and BCAAs
Amino acids are the building block of our skeletal muscle system, they are certainly the most essential component of accelerated recovery.
When you train hard, your body requires 1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight which makes it really difficult to fulfil the body’s need to protein.
Although a wide range of protein supplements are available, mostly derived from soy, plant bases, milk, meat, eggs, etc. Whey protein has been scientifically proven to be the best source of protein supplement. It has been proven (1, 2, 3, 4) to initiate muscle growth and repair.
Whey protein provides the complete amino acid profile that helps in repairing the damaged tissue. Whey protein powder is derived from milk through an extensive filtration process which makes it an highly absorbent form of protein.
WarriorNutritionCo offers the best quality WHEY in the market, it is easy to digest and has been proven to improve protein synthesis.
BCAAs on the other hand are essential amino acids that have been proven to improve protein synthesis and prevent muscle catabolization. Supplementing with BCAA while training session may assist in quick workout recovery and muscle gains.
BCAA’s contain essential amino acids (leucine, isoleucine, and valine) that play an important role in relieving post workout soreness and increasing the anabolic effects. A study demonstrates the influence of Branched-chain amino acids to activate key enzymes in protein synthesis after physical exercise. Leucine is the primary component of BCAA which has been proven to regulate the translation initiation of protein synthesis in skeletal muscle after exercise.
Beta Alanine is a popular supplement among health enthusiasts, It’s also one of the most common ingredients found in the majority of pre-workout supplements.
Beta Alanine is a non essential amino acid that does not have any protein synthesis benefits, but it acts as an inhibitor of Carnosine.
Clearing out the lactic buildup reduces DOMS and allows the flow of oxygenated blood to assist in quick recovery. Supplementing with our POWER pre workout may help in reducing DOMS while enhancing workout performance.
When you feel exhausted most of the time it's because of the depletion of body salts.
Supplementing with electrolytes that is rich in potassium, magnesium, zinc can help in reducing the workout exhaustion.
Trace minerals present in electrolytic salts act as neurotransmitters which signal the brain for 400+ brain function. These minerals plays a crucial role in regulating essential hormones, protein synthesis and muscle relaxations.
So we have talked about the basic supplementation required for the increased protein synthesis not let's jump on the post workout recovery routine.
Foam Rolling & Static Stretching
Stretching and foam rolling is something that has been neglected by the majority of fitness enthusiasts but negligence leads to injuries.
Purpose of post workout stretching is to release the joint and muscular tension. It can assist in relieving muscle tightness, soreness, and inflammation, and increase your joint range of motion.
Foam rolling is another self-myofascial release (SMR) technique which has been proven beneficial to improve range of motion and myofascial stiffness.
One small study conducted to investigate the effectiveness of foam rolling in decreasing soreness found positive impact on muscle health.
There are two kinds of recovery routine, active recovery and passive recovery.
- Active recovery: it includes low intensity activities that can help in improving blood circulation while being easy on muscle tissues. Active recovery includes swimming, walking, yoga, tai-chi, etc
- Passive recovery: it involves complete rest to the body, professional athletes go through a passive recovery routine on a periodic basis to allow the complete rest to the body and mind.
If you had a very intense training session then we suggest you opt for an active recovery routine to allow your body more healing time.
EPSOM salt bath
EPSOM salt bath has been known to cure minor bruises and pains, adding a EPSOM bath in your post workout routine not only helps in relieving DOMS but also works as a muscle relaxer.
EPSOM salt bath involves 2 cups of Epsom salt added to your bathtub with warm water. EPROM salt contains magnesium that is best absorbed through skin, it not only helps in relieving muscle pain and cramps but also detoxifies the body to improve nutrition absorption.
EPSOM baths have been found beneficial for Inflammation, sore feet, sore muscles, sprains, stiff joints, stress, sunburn and skin irritation.
Try our all natural "DETOX formula" to "eliminate toxins" and improve the quality of life.
Massage gun is a recent innovation that has revolutionized the recovery process. These guns are designed to mimic the results of deep tissue massage.
Massage guns deliver the percussive massage that helps in lengthening and stretching the muscle tissues. These deep tissue massage guns stimulate the muscle to clear lactic buildup, muscle spasm for better blood circulation.
Additionally, it also improves the range of motion by dissolving scar tissues and aiding in rapid recovery.
This is something that is hard to follow but has tons of benefits. Contrast showers have been regularly taken by professional athletes to relieve DOMS and improve blood circulation.
Contrast showers include alternating between hot and cold water showers repeatedly to gain benefits. Here is how it works:
- Hot showers relieve the tension from muscle and open the muscle pores to drain toxins from the body.
- Cold showers lead to improved blood flow by directing all the blood towards vital organs to keep them warm.
- Cold showers also stimulate weight loss by encouraging the conversion of white fat into brown fat which is then used for energy production.
- Alternating between cold and hot showers relieve lactic buildup and muscle spasm occurred due to intense training.
How to do the contrast shower:
- 3-minutes of warm water shower
- 1-minute of cold water
- Repeat the cycle 4-5 times.
Majority of the muscle building process is done while in a state of deep sleep. Professional athletes pay a lot of emphasis on their sleep quality and quantity.
Taking 8+ hours of undisturbed sleep can drastically improve the quality of your training and workout recovery.
If you are someone who experiences sleep disturbance on a regular basis then you should opt for natural supplements that are designed to improve sleep quality and speed up recovery.
Post workout recovery is something you should be paying maximum attention to. It not only helps you grow stronger and bigger but also reduces the chance of workout injuries and joint pain.
If you experience acute pain after a workout session then we strongly recommend you to visit the doctor.