It is normal to experience muscle soreness after a workout. This mostly appears the following day, and usually wears off after a couple of days, but it can continue for anything up to 1-2 weeks in some cases. It should slowly wear off over this time; if it doesn’t, you may have an injury and should visit a doctor. Fortunately, there are various things you can do to help promote faster recovery from workout soreness.
A good starting point
is to ensure you warm up adequately before exercising, and never over-exert
yourself. If you push too hard, you can burn out, and being out of action for
too long will slow your progress. Make sure you always have good form in every
exercise that constitutes your workout to minimise the risk of injury. Drink
plenty of water throughout.
When you finish your
workout, be sure to keep up adequate hydration. You should proceed straight
into a ‘cool down’ that involves stretching the muscle groups that you worked
hardest. Learn about some good stretching routines, because flexibility is an
important component of total fitness and your muscles will heal faster and
better when they get a good stretch.
Another good idea is to eat a good meal at some point between working out and going to sleep. The nutrients that are most helpful in muscle recovery include protein and carbohydrates, so give yourself plenty of these. Some people choose to take these in the form of supplements like protein shakes – this is up to you, but make sure you invest in a quality product to get the best results.
The other important thing to do is to get plenty of rest. The majority of your recovery will happen during sleep, so get your 7-8 hours as consistently as possible. You should avoid doing a workout that targets the same muscles the following day; many people will plan a workout that focuses on an entirely different muscle group. Alternatively, you can follow a weight-lifting day with a cardio day, or even a full rest day. However you choose to do it, rest is an important part of recovering from workout soreness.