You brought your workout routine to a whole new level. The next day, you can barely move your body. This is called delayed onset muscle soreness or DOMS. It happens 24 to 48 hours after you work out. It is a sign that your body is preparing to adapt the new workout routine.
A lot of fitness buffs are familiar with DOMS, but here are the major myths about it, that you might not know:
- Lactic Acid Causes DOMS. This is not true. Your body requires energy when working out. It breaks down the molecules to generate that energy; this metabolic process makes cells more acidic. That makes you feel like your muscles are burning. Microtrauma in your muscles and connective tissues causes inflammation, leading to DOMS.
- Work Out is Not Effective without DOMS. They say your work out is not good enough without DOMS, but this actually is not true. Experts say that soreness does not necessarily relate to muscle growth and adaptation. If after three days, you do the same work out and you immediately proceed to failure, then you have done too much.
- The Fitter you are, The Lesser you Experience DOMS. Being susceptible to DOMS depends on the genes because there are no-responders, low-responders, and high-responders to pain and soreness. It is important to determine which category your body belongs to. Although you will experience DOMS less if you get used to the same work out, which is why changing routine is important.
- Muscle Damage is Bad. When muscles repair, it becomes bigger and stronger, making it less susceptible to soreness. Some muscle trauma is needed to develop your muscle.
- Stretching Prevents DOMS. Unfortunately stretching does not guarantee that you will not experience soreness. Gradually shifting to a new routine can help your muscles adapt better lowering the risk for soreness.