How to Avoid Two-Day Workout Fatigue

How to cope with delayed onset muscle soreness—or avoid it altogether.

Whether it just feels too hard or you become injured, sticking to any new routine is a challenge both mentally and physically. When taking on a new workout schedule, our bodies can experience many symptoms.

These can range from feeling run down to tenderness, muscle soreness, and debilitating pain. All this can add up to Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness or DOMS.

Symptoms of DOMS may not set in right away. They often show up hours or days later. To help you stay at the top of your game and out of pain, we’re giving you easy ways to fend off this syndrome and workout fatigue in general.

How to Avoid Workout Fatigue

The Culprit

Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness or DOMS, can be experienced by both beginners and seasoned athletes. The pain usually starts to kick in between 12-24 hours after exercise. Unlike the acute type that occurs during a workout, it reaches its peak between 24-72 hours after exercise. Despite the widespread occurrence of DOMS experts aren’t certain of the cause. Many believe it is caused in part by muscle damage, inflammation, connective tissue damage, and muscle spasms.

Yoga has been shown to reduce inflammation. Check out Aaptiv’s yoga workouts in the app here.

Exercise to help avoid injury

Even though it may seem counterintuitive, giving up on going to the gym isn’t the way to avoid injury. You should exercise; but, you must warm up prior to starting a workout and stretch at the end of your routine. Stretching pre- and post-exercise can ensure that your muscles are eased into working out and then relaxed gradually when the work is done.

Start your next Aaptiv workout by doing the Elliptical Stretch Prep which gets your body ready to be challenged. It is a perfect lead in to a demanding workout such as Hello Ellip. Once your workout is complete, cool down with the Release Tight Hips and Hamstrings yoga routine which can calm and soothe your muscles.

Banish inflammation

Avoiding inflammation and muscle damage starts with eating a diet rich in whole grain starches, veggies, and Omega-3 fatty acids—all of which minimize inflammation. Try eating 2-3, four-ounce servings of salmon, codfish, halibut, or mackerel weekly to load up on beneficial fatty acids. If you’re not a seafood lover ask your doctor about supplements such as fish oil. Avoiding inflammation also has a lot to do with your immune system and almost 70% of the cells of our immune system lie in our gastrointestinal system. Support your gut health with a dose of probiotics either by taking a supplement or eating probiotic-rich foods such as yogurt.

Feed your muscles

A good rule of thumb is to consume a light meal that contains protein (sans saturated fats) prior to exercise. The American Heart Association also suggests eating whole grain cereals, whole wheat toast, brown rice, fruits, and veggies to get sufficient energy. If you are short on time, an apple or banana with nut butter will also do the trick. Also, don’t skip water prior to exercise! A study published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine suggests that dehydration limits strength, power, and endurance. Similarly, at the end of each workout session, we need to refuel. Rehydrate by consuming something high in electrolytes such as watermelon juice mixed with water. Then, eat carbs and protein within 20-60 minutes after exercise to help with recovery, so you can get back to the gym without excuses.

The Treatment

If you are already experiencing DOMS, check with your doctor. Some treatments may include rest, ice, compression, elevation (also known as RICE), and OTC nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen. Your doctor can help you determine the right treatment.

If you’re looking for the right workouts that fit your lifestyle, take Aaptiv’s fitness quiz here.



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