How to deal with DOMS - 5 Muscle Soreness Recovery Tips
You’ve smashed a workout (pleased that you've finally committed to your new workout routine), and feel ready to give it your all at another session tomorrow... Then BAM! You’re greeted with DOMS…
What a way to kill the exercise momentum, hey?
You go through the victory of working out, only to be rewarded with pain and suffering in the days that follow. It just doesn’t seem fair!
We’ve decided to save the day... Here's some handy tips to help you be rid of the pain so that you can return to exercise sooner.
1) Active Recovery
Now, bear with us, we know that this will sound like a counterproductive activity. After all, the last thing you want to think about doing when you’re in pain is to move more! But trust us, keeping moving on your rest days will help your muscles to feel better.
By continuing to move your body, you will get the blood flowing, warm the muscles up, and decrease the amount of muscle soreness you experience. This movement definitely doesn’t need to be anything dramatic or too exhaustive - a simple, light walk would do the trick!
Carrying out light exercise can help to stretch the sore muscles and provide pain relief. If a walk isn’t your thing, doing some light stretching will also assist with the pain. You could even do one of our daily Mobility flows to get you feeling better! Stretching will relieve the tight feeling and help to reduce the pain.
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2) Drink Water
Being dehydrated is a cause of muscle soreness so you need to make sure that you're drinking enough water!
Whilst you exercise, your muscles work harder than during rest periods. Because of this, the demand for oxygen is higher, and so there's an increase in blood being pumped around the body. (82% of your blood volume consists of water, and so staying hydrated is extremely important!)
Not only should you stay hydrated whilst working out, but you must ensure that you continue to drink even once having finished training.
3) Increase Circulation
Training causes your muscles to tear, which then need to repair to become stronger. This is one of the reasons why you’re experiencing muscle soreness.
You can help to reduce your time spent with DOMS by increasing your blood circulation. Better circulation means that more oxygen and nutrients can reach your injured muscles, and aid them to recovery.
A great tool to use to promote blood circulation and decrease the pain is a foam roller.
4) Have a Bath
Taking a warm bath can be a great way to ease the soreness of the muscles as a result of working out. (We don’t think you’ll need much persuading to run one for yourself!)
Lying in a warm bath promotes the blood flow to your muscles by dilating the blood vessels. For extra pain relief, we would recommend adding in epsom salts. The magnesium in the solution is absorbed through the skin, helping to reduce soreness and improve muscle function.
5) Get a Massage
Massage plays a crucial part in reducing inflammation in the body. Not only does a light massage after exercise feel good, but it can also help to reduce pain from DOMS and aid your muscle recovery.
Massaging the affected muscles can ease inflammation, improve blood flow and reduce muscle tightness and swelling.
Carry out those 5 simple steps and you'll find that your DOMS are better so that you can get back to working out pain-free!
That being said, always remember that DOMS are your body's way of alerting you to ease off training. It's always important to listen to your body, and to not rush back to exercise if you do not feel fully recovered.