Working out is hard and sometimes it leaves you feeling mighty sore. Your legs ache, your arms burn or your abs are on fire. No matter what muscle groups are hurting it’s very hard to want to hit the gym again when you’re feeling the pain. Your soreness level will vary but if you want to get in good shape then you will have to experience soreness. Don’t try to fight the soreness, embrace it and wear it as a badge of honor. You are getting stronger and you are testing yourself in a positive way, that’s what being sore represents.
But how long is too long to rest your muscles and when should you get back in the gym and get sore all over again? These can be tricky questions to answer but don’t worry, we’ll answer them for you.
Figure out the do’s and don’t’s of working out while sore with our handy dandy tips.
YES, YOU SHOULD WORKOUT
When you’re sore it is best to hit the gym again. That doesn’t mean to work the muscles that are sore and experience excruciating pain, it means that you should do a light workout to increase circulation. Gaining muscle is all about tearing your muscles a tiny bit so you don’t want to tear them more if they’re sore. You want to increase circulation which will help repair the tears and decrease your overall soreness.
If you’re feeling sore, then sitting around your house will actually make you feel worse since it will take longer to repair your muscles. Do some light cardio and then maybe focus on the muscles that aren’t sore. Afterward be sure to stretch and ice and continue to take care of your body.
FEEL THE PAIN
You need to figure out the differences between pain that is soreness and pain that is an injury. If you don’t know whether you’re sore or injured then it is best to take it very easy because if it is an injury the last thing you want to do is make it worse. A good way to know if you’re simply sore is to warm up. If the pain goes away then you’re probably just sore, if the pain gets worse that means you’re injured.
There is never too much time to stretch. Stretching is great for your body and almost a workout on its own. If you really think about it, stretching is all yoga really is. So stretch to help take care of your body and to build strength at the same time.
You need to make sure you’re stretching when your body is still warm, because stretching while cold open yourself up to injury. Make sure you get your stretching in and try to stretch for around ten minutes after your exercise. This is a great way to reduce soreness and to increase circulation.
In conclusion, working out while sore is actually a good thing that can really help your body repair itself. Also, take care of yourself to help prevent soreness as much as possible. Eating well and stretching are two of the easiest ways you can prevent soreness and keep rocking your workouts.