If you are active in your day to day life, you may wake up some mornings with soreness. Depending on what you do, the soreness may persist in your legs and back. When you walk around with that soreness, you might question where it came from and what you did wrong the day before. Instead of dwelling on the soreness, learn why it’s caused and how you can combat it.
How is soreness caused
Common soreness that people face from being active is called “delayed-onset muscle soreness” as it comes sever hours after you exercise. DOMS hasn’t been proven scientifically as of yet, but many experts believe that people who experience soreness are experiences muscle damage and regrowth.
Soreness can be felt from doing any sort of hard exercise, especially if you do new exercises or target seldomly used muscles. When you exercise, you are lengthening your muscle while it contracts at the same time. Doing bicep curls and walking/running down stairs are the two most common exercises for this to happen. When you feel a soreness due to this, it’s your muscle growing, repairing, and recovering from your exercises. This can be seen as a good thing as it will correlate to muscle growth.
Sometimes, DOMS can cause a loss of strength, which can be detrimental to your muscle growth and overall health. This type of soreness hinders you from using any amount of force, like you feel too hurt to walk or lift your arms. This soreness usually lasts a couple of days and can result in muscle damage instead of muscle growth. If you feel this type of soreness, take a break from heavy exercising until your muscles feel better.
What not to do when you have soreness
Here are a few common examples that people say will get rid of soreness, but actually won’t.
Ice: Taking an ice bath or icing a problem area doesn’t actually cure your soreness, it just numbs it so you can’t feel it.
Stretching: You have probably been taught that stretching helps cure or prevent soreness. It might make you feel better for a little bit, but it won’t ultimately cure the soreness.
Massages: Massages do feel great, but they don’t really cure soreness in your muscles. However, if they work for you and make you feel better, keep getting them!
Jogging: If you jog or use a treadmill to warm up before your workout, like stretching, it won’t actually cure or prevent muscle soreness. It may temporarily fix your problems, so if you like jogging or using a treadmill, keep at it.
How to cure muscle soreness
There is no true or scientific answer to this question, unfortunately. Your best bet is to just wait it out until it goes away. If you have to exercise with muscle soreness, just take it easy so you don’t make it feel worse. Drinking water, eating well, and sleeping it off will probably be your best bet, but if the soreness continues for a long time, see your doctor.