What are DOMS?
Delayed onset muscle soreness aka DOMS.
I feel when you say the word DOMS, it should be said in a very deep voice and almost to the tune of the 90's commercials of "TUMS, TU-TU-TU TUMMSS"
Anyways back to DOMS.
They can suck!
Let's be honest, after a solid sweat session you're feeling on cloud nine and thinking you're unstoppable...
Until the next morning or afternoon. It's when you TRY to get up from your office chair or from the couch in the afternoon and FRIG you feel those muscles! OUCH! Where did that come from? Oh yah, remember last night when the trainer made me do deeper squats... Frig!
It's called DELAYED onset muscle soreness for a reason. It's delayed. You're not sore right away, it's 24-72 hours AFTER your work out.
If you don't know what I'm talking about here are a couple references of what people have felt with it
- "Muscle fever" - Your muscle sore, sticky and gross.
- Weakness - Feeling as if you can sit down on the toilet or get up from the toilet after a killer leg day, boot camp or run
- Muscle strain - It is commonly expressed as a muscle strain. They are not the same thing. DOMS goes away within a couple days, a strain doesn't.
To simply put it, it's your muscles giving you KARMA. Punishing you for the pain you put it through.
How can you help it or avoid it?
Well, you can only avoid it by not working out and that's not happening. But you can defiantly minimize it with these 5 ways:
1. DRINK WATER. Increase your water by at least a liter to help support the circulation of cells flowing. You want to drink lots of water also to prevent muscle cramps from dehydration. DOM's does not create muscle cramps but dehydration can lead to them
2. Massage it out. Try foam rolling. Yes it may hurt like a ... but it will help. You need to trust that it will help. Be careful when foam rolling or any therapeutic massaging, sometimes massaging can do more damage. Seek professional help or be shown properly how to do so.
3. Hot bath. I like to add Epson salts and lavender oil to calm my body and mind down in the hot bath. The hot bath will again, increase circulation and help relieve pain.
4. Amino Acids. There is proof that having a Branched Chain Amino Acid as a pre-workout drink, helps protein synthesis which helps the body take on the stress.
5. Stretch. Yoga. Move. One of the worse things you can do is SIT. Get up and get moving. This is going to help flush out lactic acid that may be lingering and will help elongate your muscles and keep them moving. Muscles are tightening up during DOMS and this is where doing practices like yoga or stretching helps keep their flexibility and their strength. Walking, running, swimming or biking the day after or 2 days after can really help with recovery. THE WORSE thing to do is SIT!