How Sore Should You Be After a Workout?
Some people think that a lack of soreness after a workout means that it wasn’t intense enough. How sore should you really be after a workout?
It’s normal to have general soreness the following day. However, just because you’re not sore, doesn’t mean that you didn’t have an effective workout the day before.
There are other important factors that can cause soreness or a lack of soreness. For example, if you properly cooled down and thoroughly stretched the muscles that were worked out, you decrease any soreness you will have.
Also, your diet plays a huge role in your level of soreness. The more spot-on your diet is (i.e. you’re getting sufficient calories and macronutrients), the less sore you will be.
Stress and hormone levels can also affect your soreness level. The higher your stress, the higher level of soreness you will have.
And of course, the amount of sleep is another huge factor in this. If you’re not getting enough sleep, best believe you will be very sore!
One thing to pay attention to though, is DOMS. This is delayed onset muscle syndrome. This is basically when you are sore for 4-5 days after your workouts.
So let’s say you workout your legs on Monday and they are still very sore on Friday. This can be the result of a combination of what I just mentioned. It could also mean you’re over-training!
Perhaps the worst thing you can experience (this happened to me and it sucks) is when you start to get really sore ON THE SAME DAY as your workout.
This is usually due to either jumping back into your workout routine after taking 10-14 days off (where you don’t do any physical activity) or it can also be experience by those just starting out and doing way too much in one day.
If you’re just starting a workout program, I would suggest start slow. You will be sore no matter what you do for the most part. This is because your body isn’t used to it, but the soreness will subside and you’ll notice your body not getting sore as much as it used to.
Bottom line: Listen to your body! As time goes on, you will know what you can handle, and what you can’t. Always cool down and stretch, too.
Follow these tips and you won’t have to wonder if you’re working out intensely enough or not anymore!