If you’ve ever gone through a full regimen of endurance training, then you’re surely well aware of the accompanying soreness that you feel upon waking up the next morning. For some, it’s enough to avoid this method of strength training altogether. But what if there were ways to take advantage of this well-rounded exercise method while minimizing the painful after-effects? There are certain techniques you can practice that will both give you the energy you need to get through your endurance training workout and will allow your body to heal and bounce back faster.
First of all, before you even begin training, make sure that your body has the nutrients and fuel it needs in order to adequately get through a workout. You must be sure that you’ve had enough carbohydrates, which will provide the initial burst, and enough protein, which will allow your muscles to be more resilient and repair themselves faster. During your workout, consuming a sports drink that will provide carbohydrates and protein will not only prevent dehydration, but will also allow muscles to get the energy they need more efficiently when they need it most. This, in turn, allows your muscles to work at high proficiency without causing damage due to the presence an insufficient amount of energy. Ideally, depending on your size and physical condition, you should aim to drink a few ounces at ten minute intervals during the course of your workout. And you should continue to drink your carb/protein drink after you’ve finished your workout in order to assure that you’ve replenished fluids and nutrients used during your workout. Eating foods high in antioxidants will also limit natural cellular damage caused by a vigorous workout.
If you’re new to endurance training, then a certain amount of natural adaptation will be required before muscle soreness can be overcome. After all, muscle soreness is a natural result of the process of adapting to a specific training style. It does, in the end, lead to increased strength and agility. Sore muscles are recovering muscles, so it’s important not to overdo things. You should never push your muscles to the brink until they have fully recovered from the previous workout. In between, go easier on your muscles. Use the soreness as a barometer of your fitness level. The longer you practice this, the more you’ll be able to push when aiming for maximum capacity.
If the soreness lingers for more than 5 to7 days, it might not be normal muscle soreness at all, but a pulled or strained muscle. In some instances, it’s difficult to tell the difference initially. However, if you continue with light workouts following your initial soreness and do not see improvement within a week or so, you should stop training altogether and get checked out by a doctor.