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Muscle Soreness After Working Out - Causes and Treatment For Post Workout Muscle Soreness

When you workout very intensely or if you workout lightly but just haven't worked out in a long time you will typically have sore muscles the next day and sometimes even several days after your workout. But are sore muscles something you should expect every single time you lift weights?

In order to answer this question we need to look at two of the primary reasons why muscle soreness occurs in the first place...

Reason 1 - When you are lifting weights you are essentially creating small tears in your muscle fibers. The body's healing of these muscle fibers is what causes your muscles to grow and develop.

As you begin to workout with heavier weights, your muscles will be pushed beyond their normal abilities (which is a good thing) and this triggers the tearing which then leads to healing and muscle development. In other words, if you don't have sore muscles after an intense workout then you must have been doing something wrong during your workout.

Reason 2 - During an intense exercise regimen something called lactic acid forms in the muscles due to a lack of oxygen rich blood to the muscles being worked out. What happens is that during exercise your muscles are primarily getting their energy from anaerobic energy production which is accomplished by converting something called pyruvate (an enzyme involved in glycolysis) into lactic acid. As this lactic acid accumulates in your muscles the overall acidity inside the muscle for most people usually leads to soreness after your workout.

To get back to the original question posed at the start of this article, muscles pain is NOT something you should expect every single time you workout since muscle pain is due primarily to the level of intensity of your workouts.

Is there anything you can do to lessen muscle pain after an intense workout?

Yes there is. One thing you can do is to stretch thoroughly before an intense workout and by this I mean spend at least 10 minutes stretching before you begin your workout routine. I should also point out that extensive stretching is only effective for some people and not for others. In addition, to prevent serious, debilitating muscle soreness it's important to gradually increase the intensity of your workouts. This means that you don't spend two weeks bench pressing 150 pounds only to walk in the gym one day and try benching 250 pounds.

Another thing you can do to reduce muscles soreness after exercise is take a few amino acid capsules before and after your workout. Amino acids are very inexpensive, can be purchased at any vitamin store, and are proven effective in reducing muscle soreness after exercise. As an added benefit, amino acids will help you develop more muscle, faster.

The most obvious, but highly effective treatment for post workout muscle soreness is to simply take one ibuprofen before your workout and another one immediately after.

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