Tips to help with post exercise agony please :)

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Hi, sorry if similar posts come up regularly, have checked the "must reads" but no answers yet.
Started going to the gym again beginning of November after a year away from much exercise :( Mostly cardio, some free weights, 45-60 mins, 2/3 times per week. Trying to do kettlebells at home at least once per week also.
But my legs are agony. It's making me go longer between sessions than I'd like to. I switch up between "leg days" and upper body stuff to try to give my legs a rest, but this week I've not been to the gym since Monday. The soreness is real. I'm stretching, but it hurts.
Any advice? Sorry to whine, I'm scared I'll give up if it doesn't start to improve. I don't want to take painkillers as they make me drowsy.
I'm 29, around 145-148lbs this week, ankles are "clicky" and sore, but most pain is in my thighs and butt :(

Replies

  • debubbie
    debubbie Posts: 767 Member
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    What kind of exercises are you doing for your legs? You may be lifting too much or doing too many squats and lunges if you are starting over from a year ago. You may feel better of you lower the weight or number of reps for a month or so and start adding more as you get stronger and don't feel as sore.
  • usmcmp
    usmcmp Posts: 21,220 Member
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    You need to reduce volume or weights a little until you aren't as sore after workouts. Then slowly add more. Eating adequate protein can help with recovery. Some people swear by BCAAs or creatine to help ease DOMS, but I never noticed an improvement.

    No matter, what it does get better over time.
  • nicholajaneryan
    nicholajaneryan Posts: 76 Member
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    I use a 6kg kettlebell, do about 5 sets of 10 goblet squats, in between various swings and around the body passes to catch my breath. Very short, 10 mins, try to do a couple of that workout throughout the day.
    In the gym it's mostly the exercise bike, rowing machine, stepping machine thing... And lunges with free weights, with 2 3kg fee weights.

    Thanks for your reply, I'll try with lighter weights for my next session and see if that helps, they don't seem heavy while I'm doing them though, just light enough to to keep good form.
  • winnie141
    winnie141 Posts: 211 Member
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    You might also try to use a foam roller after your workouts! If your sore it will be really painful to roll out. But if you do it once a day you will see an improvement. I have had my foam roller for about a year now and it doesn't hurt to use it anymore. Also make sure yo drink plenty of water and try some yoga stretches!
  • xmichaelyx
    xmichaelyx Posts: 883 Member
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    Lots of people will offer you solutions, including drinking more water, BCAAs, stretching more, and foam rolling.

    But as someone who, like you, experiences really serious DOMS, I can assure you that none of it will do a damn thing. All you can do is work through it. Ease into working out for a few weeks (that is, do 20-30 minute workouts, with lighter weights) -- you'll still get sore, but it won't be debilitating. Once your muscles are used to being worked, it won't hurt so bad anymore. You'll still feel minor soreness and tightness, but not actual pain (I actually like this soreness because it makes me feel like I've done something).

    If I take more than a week or so off from working out, it takes me about 3 weeks of easing back into things before I no longer have DOMS and can walk and move right -- that's why I don't take time off unless it's totally unavoidable.
  • Psychgrrl
    Psychgrrl Posts: 3,177 Member
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    Foam roller and therapy balls work well for me. I bought this http://www.amazon.com/Treat-While-Train-Self-Accessories/dp/B00NO82FRQ/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1448586502&sr=8-2&keywords=roll+model along with Jill Miller's book "The Role Model." I do this after my workout and before I stretch and it has greatly helped my DOMS. As in it's mostly gone.
  • ecjim
    ecjim Posts: 1,001 Member
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    You have a lot of lower body exercises and little upper body - maybe loose the " stepping machine thing" and add some pressing exercise - keep the row & kettlebell , lunges & goblet squats - It is muscle soreness & not joint pain? It will get better - Eastcoast Jim
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 27,988 Member
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    I use a 6kg kettlebell, do about 5 sets of 10 goblet squats, in between various swings and around the body passes to catch my breath. Very short, 10 mins, try to do a couple of that workout throughout the day.
    In the gym it's mostly the exercise bike, rowing machine, stepping machine thing... And lunges with free weights, with 2 3kg fee weights.

    Thanks for your reply, I'll try with lighter weights for my next session and see if that helps, they don't seem heavy while I'm doing them though, just light enough to to keep good form.

    Backing off the weights was my first thought but since they don't feel heavy at the time I am wondering if you are drinking enough water/liquid?
  • nicholajaneryan
    nicholajaneryan Posts: 76 Member
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    Thanks guys, it's good to know I'm not alone and your ideas are great. I've woken up still sore and stiff but I'm going to drink a tonne of water throughout the day and go easy at the gym after work... Hopefully it all helps and will get better with time
  • TavistockToad
    TavistockToad Posts: 35,719 Member
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    Are you stretching enough after your workouts?
  • successgal1
    successgal1 Posts: 996 Member
    edited November 2015
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    I definitely find that more protein helps with recovery. Mainly it sounds to me like you're overdoing just a tad in your enthusiasm. Do you do rest days? If my legs were that bad I might do some brisk walking but take a day or two off and let them do what they are doing, healing. You can still do upper body. I find it helpful to alternate upper and lower body days too.

    Edited : I see that you're trying rest days. It definitely seems like you're doing more then you're ready for. There is no need to workout so hard that you become non functional. And working out while you're that sore can lead to injury as you unconsciously use bad form to avoid stressing a particular sore muscle.