curvy-mamma asked: I started a new cardio class two weeks ago and the DOMS the next day make so I don't want to move. Are there things I can do to prevent and/or relieve delayed onset muscle soreness?
DOMS is fairly common whenever we start a new workout routine or increase the intensity of our exercises, but never fear! There’s a lot that you can do to either prevent soreness entirely or help to reduce the amount of discomfort that you end up suffering through:
- Always warm up and cool down. Jumping straight into an exercise is going to put unnecessary stress on your muscles and heart, while ending a workout cold turkey doesn’t give you any time to recover. Always ease your body in and out of an intense workout.
- Do not static stretch without warming up soon. Although stretching is a great way to ease muscle pain, stretching a cold muscle is just going to cause injury. You’re not helping yourself in this case.
- With that said, be sure to consistently stretch and foam roll after workouts (and on rest days). Only work on warm muscles, never push yourself to the point of pain and use dynamic stretches whenever possible.
- Make sure that you’re hydrated and eating a balanced diet. Nutritional deficiencies and a lack of water are going to make recovery more difficult, so keep your diet in check. If necessary, especially after strength training, make it a habit to eat some protein in order to aid muscle repair.
- Take a cold shower or ice your muscles. The low temperature will help to decrease muscle inflammation. It may not be the most comfortable thing, but if you tend to get really painful DOMS after certain exercises, then a couple minutes of freezing your butt off might be worthwhile.
- If you need to rest, then rest! your body can’t recover if you don’t give it the opportunity to repair itself. There’s no shame in saying that you need to take some time off. Trying to work through pain is not always going to help you, sometimes it can push your body over the edge and cause an injury.