How to reduce soreness from workouts

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

So you started a new workout and you are all pumped up ready to go! You get thru the first workout and you're feeling like a rockstar...until the next day....or even worse...the day after that!  You are literally so sore you can't bend over.
When I first start P90X, by biggest struggle was dealing with the soreness. How was a supposed to do ANOTHER workout when I could BARLEY get in & out of bed. If I dropped something, it's new home was on the floor lol
Muscle soreness is caused by microscopic tearing of the muscle fibers. Ew!! Right!? Sounds awful but your muscle fibers tear and then when your body repairs them it makes them stronger than before- which is why you see results. Have you ever heard of people breaking their bones and the point at which it broke is now
stronger than before?

This muscle soreness is most frequently felt when you begin a new exercise program, change your exercise routine, or dramatically increase the duration or intensity of your exercise routine.

So what is the best way to deal with this so you can continue your workouts?

  • Use a foam roller! In P90X2, Tony focuses a lot of muscle recovery and really training like an athlete,
    It instantly relieved pressure in my muscles and didn’t wear them out in the process. P90X2 involves a lot more dynamic warm ups with foam rolling before each workout. When you first start using a foam roller it hurts. It’s like having a deep tissue message. It targets the knots in your muscles and releases the tension. It honstly is one of those sensations that “hurts good”…if that makes any sense. After a couple of foam rolling sessions I felt looser and my muscle recovery increased. Love P90X2! 
  • P90X Results and Recovery Formula I wasn't aware of this until I completed my first 30 days of P90X. OMG if ONLY I could go back in time!! I didn't realize that you didn't have to be that sore.  Exercise has depleted the muscle's fuel resources, caused some minor damage, and that the muscle is in need of replenishment and repair.
    Exercise essentially tears down old, less adapted muscle in order to rebuild more functional muscle. This phenomenon is called remodeling. It's important to emphasize that this remodeling only takes place if the muscle is provided the right raw materials.
    If I plan on  remodeling my home I can hire a guy to tear down a couple of walls, a guy to clean up the mess, and a guy to come in and rebuild better walls than the ones that came down. But if I don't give that guy any bricks, how's he going to get anything done? If I don't give him the bricks, all I'll have in the end is a much smaller, unfinished house. The same is true with exercise remodeling.
    Exercise breaks down our muscle carbohydrate stores and our muscle protein structures. Then, the immune system comes in to clean up the mess. Signals are generated to tell the body to rebuild. However, without the proper protein and carbohydrate raw materials, this building can't take place. You'll be left with muscles that never reach their potential. In short, feed your muscles! Check out the R&R Formula here
The P90 Results and Recovery Formula contains:

  1. Simple and complex carbohydrates for optimum glycogen replenishment
  2. A high Protein Efficiency Ratio (PER) blend to provide the critical building blocks for rapid muscle resynthesis
  3. Vitamins, including antioxidants, to help reduce muscle soreness and assist in repair and growth

  • Warm Up & Stretch! Make sure you are completely warmed up before your next workout. I used to try to follow the workouts to a T but then I realized...the advantage to having it on dvd is you can PAUSE it and continue to warm up if you need it. You can do more stretches after you've warmed up. Remember, it's YOUR workout!
  • HYDRATE!  The old way of thinking is out! 64 oz of water is not enough for everyone. Take your body weight and divide by 2. That is the number of ounces you need daily. Example, if a man weighs 200 pounds he would need to drink 100 ounces of water (200/2 = 100). 
  • Xtend-  I can workout longer and harder, and with less soreness. Basically due to the BCAAs it provides, you induce less muscle damage while you workout. While you still get the same training stimulus you would otherwise, you now have less soreness and less recovery time to deal with. It is not a dramatic difference, but it is noticeable for me. I mix 1 scoop in my water bottle (24oz) and drink it during my workout as needed (as I get thirsty).
  • Arnica- This is a homeopathic remedy that I actually never heard of until I worked at GNC. I definitely don't use this all of the time but it really helps reduce the soreness. A lot of people take it after they have surgery. It comes in a tablet or gel form. Basically it's a "Pain relieving gel for bumps, bruises, sprains, sports injuries & over-exercising." You can find it in GNC or my fav
These are just some of the things that have worked for me. I'm not a doctor or scientist lol but hopefully it helps you guys! 

Have you ever tried any of these? What have you done that has really helped with soreness?


  1. Def have to try the foam roller.

  2. Two very important words: cooldown and magnesium.

    Cooldown is important because - in addition to the muscle tearing - lactic acid (what your muscles release when they tear) contributes to pain. You create lactic acid every day with every activity, but because it is usually not strenuous, your body clears it. In the case of intense workouts, your body is unable to clear the lactic acid, and it collects in the muscle tissue. Easy activity after intense activity allows the muscle to clear it. It's why you should never just "stop."

    Magnesium is important because it dilates the blood vessels and causes muscles to relax, aiding in faster healing. While there are creams and supplements, there is another way to get it that is both extremely economical AND easy for your body to absorb. Epsom salts are simply magnesium sulfate. Using them in a hot bath is perfect because the heat aids in absorption (not to mention heat feels good, too!). You can get a large box of epsom salts for just a few dollars, too.

    Sorry for the long comment. Just wanted to give you some more scientific remedies that are free (or close to it!) and easy to do.

  3. Hot epsom salt baths are amazing!!! Thank you for all of the tips!! =)