7 ways to minimise DOMS
The delayed onset of muscle soreness – more commonly referred to as DOMS – isn't just unpleasant, it's downright horrible. The bad news is that unfortunately there isn't much you can do about it. Yep, even Men's Health can't help you with this one.
DOMS is a natural by-product of intense exercise, caused by micro trauma to the muscle fibres. And that's just the way it is. Life's a bitch, right?
However, before you walk away, sulking, there is some good news: as each workout passes, and you grow fitter and stronger, the effects do ease off a tad. Only a tad, mind. But that's not all. Come on now, you didn't think Men's Healthwould give up that easily, did you?
We've racked our brains and rummaged through the research papers and come up with seven, yes seven, ways to reduce the impact of DOMS.
Sometimes we impress ourselves, you know...
Knock back a cherry-packed fruit salad after legs day to make sure you’ll be able to get downstairs in the morning. They’re crammed with anthocyanins, which increase the rate oxygen speeds to your screaming muscles. You get quicker recovery, less pain the next day, and a post-workout snack that’s tastier than gritty shakes.
How low (intensity) can you go?
The rarely tackled warm-down is the best way to jettison muscle-stiffening lactic acid. Drop the weight you’ve just been lifting by 70% and knock out a couple of sets. The increased circulation encourages blood to ship lactic acid out of your muscles, so it won’t make itself felt the next day.
Elite athletes finish heavy workouts with a 20-minute dip in 8C water. If your lunch break won’t stretch to such manhood-shrinking undertakings (that’s the only reason, right?) try alternating your shower between 40C and 10C for two-minute blasts. You’ll constrict and then encourage blood flow to flush stiffness-causing hormones away from your joints and muscles, speeding up recovery by 30%, according to New Zealand research.
Swap your pre-workout sports drink for a cup of coffee. A study published in theJournal of Strength and Conditioning Researchfound weightlifters who’d drunk 5mg of caffeine per kg – that’s a generous double espresso – not only lifted more compared to a placebo group, but also reported reduced soreness in the days after. Make it an extra-strong latte to couple the caffeine with a muscle-boosting hit of whey protein.
When your muscle soreness is crippling, menthol is an even more effective way to block out the pain than ice. A study published in theInternational Journal of Sports Physiotherapyfound applying topical gel cut soreness by two-thirds by inhibiting the brain’s pain-sensing neurons. Slather on Tiger Balm next time you struggle to lift your arms. Or get someone else to do it if you can’t even reach that far.
It sounds counterintuitive, but spending more time in the gym limits your pain in the long run. The more you put your muscles through the more they grow accustomed to tough training. The opposite’s true too, which is why the first session back after Christmas has you stuck prone on the sofa for two days. Try this split routine to make sure you’re not overtraining individual muscle groups. And grit your teeth for the first few weeks. Itwillget easier.
Despite its mildness, watermelon is actually a nutritional powerhouse, packing in an array of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants without the calorie clout of more sugar-dense fruits. Those keen to avoid John Wayne syndrome should be most interested in L-citrulline, which reduces muscle soreness when taken before exercise. Chase your coffee with a glass of watermelon juice and you’ll be able to tackle the next day (almost) pain free.
Video: Sore Muscle Stretch Routine. Get Rid of Stiffness fast!
Pain After Cycling
EXCLUSIVE: Rosie Huntington-Whiteley Talks Her First Ever Cosmetics Line, Fitness And Her Most Embarassing Beauty Moment Ever
11 Ways Youre Making Holiday Cookies Wrong
Top 6 Slimming Swimsuits
19 Best Body Lotions Of 2019 In India – You Don’t Need Anything Else
Prince William Is Now the First Royal to Be Pictured on the Cover of an LGTB Magazine
How to Hit on Someone at the Gym (Without Being Creepy)
Stunning Backless Wedding Gowns That You Will Absolutely Adore
Can You Be Overweight, but Still Healthy
Spring Summer 2019 Shoe Trends
Treat Glaucoma the Natural Way
5 Signs of Sexual Dysfunction in Women