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Q: I started working out about 6 weeks ago and currently do weight training two to three times a week; usually I am sore for 2-3 days after that and more if I do a very intense workouthttp://www.shapefit.com/workout-questions-muscle-soreness.html. Is this OK?
-S. Glass, -Mission Viejo, CA
A: Yes, it's actually okay and a good thing that you are sore. This tells you that your muscles have been worked very well and they are recovering from an intense workout, however you don’t want to get to the point of soreness where you can barely function normally. It is not a good thing to over train.
Try to work on recovery methods for relieving the soreness, like taking a hot Jacuzzi after your workouts, a massage or deeply rubbing/massaging your muscles for 15-20 minutes. It is also good to incorporate a recovery drink within one hour after workouts. There are many out on the market however I recommend a high quality protein drink. Protein aids in muscle recovery, growth and repair. Choose a quality protein powder that has 100% pure hydrolyzed whey protein peptides which have a benefit of a more rapid and complete absorption process. These suggestions will help decrease the soreness in the trained areas.
In terms of the weights, try to always get stronger and stronger. This way, you will always tax your muscles and make them hypertrophy (grow). Your one of the lucky ones if you keep getting stronger. Most people hit a plateau and can't seem to increase their weight lifted after the course of many years.
For you to change your body, you need to periodically change your routine. There are different philosophies on how often to do this, although nearly everyone agrees that doing so is important to improve your health and fitness. Incorporating variety in to your routine improves metabolism, increases motivation, and prevents boredom.
A few suggestions to help you to achieve progress through your weight training routine are to keep records of your workouts to see what you have been doing and for how many weeks. This will also help prepare yourself for your next workout. You want to identify the length of time where your body has adapted to the program but has not quite gotten use to it. Choose other activities you are interested in and realistically have access to. Change your strength training schedule. Vary the number of sets, repetitions per set, and amount of weight from one week to the next, while keeping in mind that you always want the last three repetitions of each set to be challenging.
To create a new and effective routine, it isn't necessary to incorporate all of these changes at once. You can choose one or more to keep your body from getting acclimated to your workout and reaching a plateau. It sounds like you have a good start so keep up the great work!
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