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How to prevent and treat muscle soreness?
How to prevent and treat muscle soreness?
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Whether you are a professional athlete or a fitness enthusiast, one of the first lessons you learn about sport is the unfortunate post workout pain, known also as muscle soreness. It can happen when you make a distinct change in your exercise routine, if you push yourself too far or if you are a beginner in fitness and sport in general. The condition is completely normal and unless the soreness is too severe, it can be completely ignored without any danger for permanent damage.



Why does it happen?

A common misconception is that the unpleasant pain after working out is caused by lactic acid, when in fact the soreness is a result of tiny tears which have occurred on the muscle surface. These microscopic wounds are triggered when the muscle moves and this causes a discomfort which can be mild or extremely intense, depending on each individual case. Normally, it doesn’t take a long time before the tears heal and it may not even be necessary to take a break from working out. Still - there are certain steps one can take if they wish to recover quickly or avoid muscle soreness altogether.

Prevention

The first, and rather obvious rule, is moving towards your goals in a slow pace. Know your current limitations and watch out for warning signs. This is especially important to consider if you are a beginner – keep in mind that intense muscle soreness is one of the reasons that can make you give up, so take it easy – there is a long road ahead. The second, very well known “secret” is protein supplementation. It is proven that protein intake strengthens muscle tissue and helps it regenerate and thus makes muscle fibers less susceptible to bruising and damage. Some studies show that stretching can reduce the risk of muscle soreness.



Treatment

Again – let’s start with the obvious:  although this is optional - the easiest thing to do is simply to have a short break. It is proven that a healthy individual can push through muscle soreness and keep working out without any risks for trauma or even decrease in performance. Hot and cold showers can help relief the pain due to their ability to increase the blood flow and speed up recovery. Taking a warm bath has the same effect and it eliminates tension in general. Massage is also a very well known and effective form of treatment, but our advice is to put your trust only in professional masseurs.

Final words

No one is immuned to muscle soreness and the decision how to deal with this condition is completely individual. If are the type of person who can’t ignore discomfort try as many treatments as possible before choosing the one that fits you the best. .
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