New Year, New You, New Workout Pains?
I love that people make New Years Resolutions related to fitness and wellness. Good for you!!! Just a few things to be mindful of while returning to your favorite fitness routine:
1. More is NOT always better.
This is THE most important thing to bear in mind. Depending on when you were last physically active or engaged in a fitness routine, you might need to realllllly take it slowly. Going from zero to five days at the gym is great, but know that just GETTING to the gym/living room/yoga mat is a HUGE achievement. Habits are the hardest thing to change, right? Once you are there, make sure to get a sufficient warm up, which means doing a low-intensity version of your workout exercise(s) for AT LEAST 10 minutes. If you have increased the frequency of your visits dramatically, realize that every workout should not be the most intense you can make it. Shoot for 50/50- 50% highER intensity, 50% lower intensity.
2. Just because you once [insert achievement here], does NOT mean that you will be able to do that in 6 weeks. (Read: #1)
Yes, it is fantastic that you ran a marathon 5 years ago. So impressed that you pulled your body weight for 3 reps before you had your second baby. Yes, yes, yes to all that. You are still awesome. And so is your body! But, bodies change in response to the demands placed on them (both physical and mental). If it's been a minute since you visited these activities, give yourself some space and TIME to return to the level you are shooting for. Building muscle mass takes AT MINIMUM 3 months. Starting slow and incrementally adding challenges (10-20% increase in resistance, duration OR intensity per week) will give you the safest and most sustainable results.
3. "No pain, no gain" is a relative term (Read again: #1)
Post-exercise muscle soreness (or Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness, DOMS) is very normal and in fact should be expected, particularly if you haven't worked out in a while. The onset of soreness can be anywhere from 12-48 hours after your exercise. Muscle soreness generally is worst when you start moving, better with more movement, and resolves within 1-2 days. One way to help with DOMS is to do the same activity you did that caused the soreness, at a lower intensity. This gets increased blood flow to the muscles, which helps move out lactic acid, a byproduct of muscle work that causes the feeling of soreness. Soreness or pain lasting for more than 2 days is less typical, as is pain that is sharp/shooting/burning in nature. These types of pain might warrant a visit to your friendly neighborhood PT.
4. PT can help to safely navigate your return to fitness routine!
Are you unsure of how to start your journey back to fitness? Experiencing some pain that is holding you back from starting? Come in to PT x AJ for a movement screen. We'll discuss your goals, look at your movement, strength, and flexibility, and get you back on track!