It can be hard to spot the difference between muscle soreness from a great workout and pain indicating something is wrong. But it is an important different to understand and be able to identify. Here are 6 simple ways to know wither you should just give yourself a small break or if you need to seek help from a doctor with your Muscle Stress.
A good workout will make you sore, but your muscles recover with more strength. If your soreness keeps you from doing your usual number of reps, though, take a day off. You want to build your muscles up, not tear them down.
One of the most important things you can do, is learn how to read your body and what it it trying to tell you through simply signals. Feeling soreness is a natural aspect of the process, but when that soreness keeps you from completing other activities, you may be pushing yourself too far.
2) You are always sore
Constant muscle soreness means you need more recovery time. Your muscles need a period of rest to regain their strength, and exercising too soon can cause injuries. Pay special attention to soreness in your calves. The R.I.C.E. Method is recommended by Sport Physical Therapy experts when you find yourself in this situation. You follow these steps for the R.I.C.E. Method. First step- Rest, Ice (about 20 minutes), Compression (using a compression bandage), and Elevation.
3) Your joints hurt
Pay special attention to chronic aches in your body’s major stress points at the knees, shoulders or lower back. Exercising incorrectly can cause long-lasting damage to your joints through repetitive movement and pressure. See a professional about joint pain to prevent a life-long injury.
This is something that can be prevented by proper form as well. Making sure that you are exercising with the appropriate weigh amount, so you don’t over exert certain muscles. Then using the proper form while performing your reps will strengthen those muscles and build you up so you can increase what you can do.
4) Overall stress like insomnia, loss of appetite, or irritability
Chronic pain and soreness that keeps you from sleeping will make anyone irritable. Exercise should relieve stress, so if you find yourself more stressed out, tired, and achy than usual from your regular routine, take a day off and ask a professional how to work out safely.
5) Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness
If your muscles are sore, shaky, swollen and weak up to 4 days after a workout, you need a rest. People suffering from delayed onset muscle soreness after an arm workout might be too sore to even take a shower or lift a toothbrush. Exercising in this state can seriously injure your muscles and joints. Your muscles need a certain level of strength to remain stable and train safely – don’t push it by trying to train too quickly.
6) Dangerous muscle pain
If you experience dizziness, trouble breathing, a fever, painful neck stiffness, or extreme muscle weakness, go to a doctor immediately. Other warning signs are redness and swelling around the achy area, muscle pain after you switch medications or pain that lasts longer than a week.
By taking the right precautions and paying attention to your body you can continue to exercise safely! Your sports professional is always there if you worry that you are feeling the wrong kind of soreness.
Make sure to catch issues early and not letting them escalate to something that can cause you permanent damage and keep you away from what you love long term.