Can you be too sore to work out?

Posted on in Industry News, News


Editor’s note: This article originally appeared on Greatist. Click here for the original article. 

Your alarm goes off and it’s time to get up for your morning strength training session. As you start to get up you realize your long run yesterday left you more sore than normal. We know strength training is an important part of any fitness routine, but consider this before you get up and power through your reps: exercising sore muscles can make your strength training session less effective and can possibly lead to an injury.

Soreness after a workout, also called delayed onset muscle soreness, is common. It is caused by microscopic tears in muscle fibers. The tears happen when the muscles aren’t familiar with the activity they are performing. Continuing the example above, the day before your strength training session you did a 10-mile run instead of your usual 5-mile run. The distance you ran the day before is 5 miles more than your muscles are used to running.

If you’re feeling more sore than usual, you may want to consider taking a rest day. The soreness you feel means you pushed yourself harder than normal, which is great, but trying to power through the pain instead of giving your body time to heal and repair itself could lead to an injury. You could end up being forced to take several days off instead of just one.

If you must exercise, try doing light exercise like walking. If your muscles are sore to the touch you might be suffering from an overtraining injury. Click here to learn more about overtraining injuries.