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  1. #1
    Registered User kellifromkeller's Avatar
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    Is there anyway to prevent DOMS???

    I always get DOMS really bad. Typically just in my legs. My arms will be sore the next day but nothing like my legs (does this mean I'm not working my arms as hard?).

    Here's an example of my legs DOMS: Tuesday after noon I did squats and dead lifts, ever since then my legs have been extremely sore, to the point where it hurts to walk up the 12 stairs in my house. I hate this because it's prevented me from doing cardio. I had planned on doing cardio on Wednesday, but legs were to sore, and then I planned on Thursday, but my legs were STILL too sore. Today they are less sore but still pretty sore.

    I know its not a pulled muscle, so please don't say its just that, because I absolutely know that's not what it is.

    Is there ANY way to prevent this?? It's really getting in the way of my work out plans!!
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    Self-Banned jf1's Avatar
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    if you keep working out, stick with your schedule, your body will adapt and the DOMS will decrease...

    up to a point, i think you will grow to appreciate DOMS...i do!
    thats how i judge my workout the day after!

    i understand that if it interferes with daily life it is inconvenient but as you progress in fitness the DOMS will lessen and i bet you will eventually miss it!
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  3. #3
    train hard and smart Outdoor Girl's Avatar
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    Maybe I'm crazy but I like DOMS, lets me know I worked hard. I have been working out each body part 1x per week consistenly for the last 7 weeks and it's hard to get sore, even when I push pretty hard. However, I did something new with legs on Tuesday and was pretty sore to the end of the day yesterday. However, I still had no issues with doing cardio.

    If I do legs consistently, 1x per week, they will not get so sore that I can't do anything else. The only time they get that sore is when I'm not consistent. Not sure if this helps...good luck!
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    Registered User Jesusfollower72's Avatar
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    I find the more I move and warm up the muscles the less it hurts (short term, when you sit down it'll hurt when you get up again), but for cardio maybe you could walk first and loosen up the muscles and not have to skip the cardio.
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  5. #5
    Registered User kellifromkeller's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Outdoor Girl View Post
    Maybe I'm crazy but I like DOMS, lets me know I worked hard. I have been working out each body part 1x per week consistenly for the last 7 weeks and it's hard to get sore, even when I push pretty hard. However, I did something new with legs on Tuesday and was pretty sore to the end of the day yesterday. However, I still had no issues with doing cardio.

    If I do legs consistently, 1x per week, they will not get so sore that I can't do anything else. The only time they get that sore is when I'm not consistent. Not sure if this helps...good luck!
    Don't get me wrong... I love being sore... but this is rediculous!! Three days after and I still can barely walk, and I REALLY need to do some cardio haha
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  6. #6
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    I found that light cardio after leg day seriously decreases the DOMS intensity. Makes it almost go away. Just walk on the treadmill for a half-hour. Nice and easy, no running or uphill.
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  7. #7
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    Have you tried L-Glutamine? It's supposed to help with muscle recovery. I find it helps a great deal.

    From what I understand DOMS is not actually a good indicator of workout effectiveness. Apparently it's faulty logic to assume that because you are sore your workout is better than when you dont get sore.

    Although as others have stated, I always feel like I "worked harder" when I get sore the next day and have grown to appreciate a little post workout pain =)

    I also agree with others, warming up before you lift and stretching after should probably help decrease the amount of pain you have....
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  8. #8
    Fortified With Iron gfundaro's Avatar
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    LOOOOOOTS of stretching and LOOOOOOOOTS of water. Walk around after you've done legs, and try not to just sit down *or* do moderate-heavy cardio afterward. There's not a whole lot you can do for DOMS, but I find it's worse if I'm dehydrated or stiff from sitting/not stretching enough. And stretch the next day, too. And don't forget your post workout protein. The water will help flush lactic acid, but a large part of DOMS is just a result of microtears in the muscle (which is what you want), and having amino acids handy can help with repairs.
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  9. #9
    Glorious Off Season MauiZos's Avatar
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    Usually very intense DOMS that continues after the first few times you work a muscle group is a sign of poor nutrition. Make sure you're eating a clean diet, and pay special attention to the appropriate carbs and protein before and after your workouts. Add 5g of glutamine to your PWO shake/meal and take another 5g before bed.

    Fruits and veggies are especially important to get a variety of nutrients, of course, but also the anti-oxidants that combat the free radicals produced by intense exercise.

    Some light cardio, a warm bath, and stretching can all stimulate the blood flow necessary to speed up muscle recovery.

    SLEEP is also essential for muscle recovery.

    Continuing intense DOMS (I'm talking about the kind that interferes with moving or walking) is a sign you're not giving your body something it needs for the muscles to recover properly.
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  10. #10
    train hard and smart Outdoor Girl's Avatar
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    I had to come back to this thread. I have added walking lunges to my leg routine and they really make my legs sore, and it seems like every time, too. I'm curious if this happens to others as well, and if perhaps your DOMS is related to lunges? (Leg day was two days ago and it still hurts to sit down!)
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  11. #11
    Bulking freebirdmac's Avatar
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    Right now I have terrible DOMS in my upper inner calf area. This is from my first workout with a new trainer on Tues. Just barely touching this part of my calf is painful. And I walk like a duck for a few minutes after sitting. To me this is over the line and means I did too much to that muscle.

    Contrast that to my lower bicep area which is also sore, I feel the aching without even moving my arms. And straightening my arms hurts! But I can touch, massage that area without feeling the same discomfort I feel in my calves. To me, that's a good soreness. More than I'd like to have, but ok.

    Motrin helps me with the discomfort.
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  12. #12
    Registered User kellifromkeller's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Outdoor Girl View Post
    I had to come back to this thread. I have added walking lunges to my leg routine and they really make my legs sore, and it seems like every time, too. I'm curious if this happens to others as well, and if perhaps your DOMS is related to lunges? (Leg day was two days ago and it still hurts to sit down!)
    Mine is in my hamstings so I am assuming this is from dead lifts... I only get DOMS in my legs though. My arms will get sore but I can still use them. My legs are pretty much pointless right now and I worked them on Tuesday. I've tried to push through and still do cardio but couldn't. I've tried everything, stretching them, hot soak, trying to move around and get them warmed up but nothing has helped
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  13. #13
    Bulking freebirdmac's Avatar
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    My upper/inner calf area is still very sore. I still have to walk like a duck when I get up from sitting. Stretching and Motrin have helped, but like your hammies, this is too much.

    Funny thing is, I bet once our muscles are no longer so sore that we can do the same workout and not get so sore.

    And like you, DOMS is my legs is far more intense and effects everything where arms just seem to be more of a normal sore. But our biggest muscle group is in our legs so it makes sense.
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  14. #14
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    Preventing DOMS

    Originally Posted by kellifromkeller View Post
    I always get DOMS really bad. Typically just in my legs. My arms will be sore the next day but nothing like my legs (does this mean I'm not working my arms as hard?).

    Here's an example of my legs DOMS: Tuesday after noon I did squats and dead lifts, ever since then my legs have been extremely sore, to the point where it hurts to walk up the 12 stairs in my house. I hate this because it's prevented me from doing cardio. I had planned on doing cardio on Wednesday, but legs were to sore, and then I planned on Thursday, but my legs were STILL too sore. Today they are less sore but still pretty sore.

    I know its not a pulled muscle, so please don't say its just that, because I absolutely know that's not what it is.

    Is there ANY way to prevent this?? It's really getting in the way of my work out plans!!
    Kelly, the problem with DOMS treatments and prevention is that the clinical research is all over the board. For every peer-reviewed clinical study that you can find that shows efficacy for treating DOMS, you can often find another that directly refutes it.

    As the responses show, everyone has their favorite DOMS "preventative" or treatment. I've personally had some luck with L-Glutamine/Whey/Ice Bath combos, but it's really hard to know how much of this is the placebo effect.

    A survey of the literature shows that the most promising treatments seem to be around cyrotherapy -- specifically cold water immersion -- and compression therapy -- things like compression sleeves worn both during and after exercise. There is also some evidence that antioxidants and antioxidant vitamins (the research has focused primarily on Vitamin C and Vitamin E) may help some people, as well.

    Jury is really out on the use of NSAIDs -- many studies show them ineffective at producing relief, and they may interfere with protein synthesis and recovery.

    Supps like L-Glutamine and L-Carnitine have very little research around them, but like I said, they do have their fans.

    I've used ice baths pretty effectively on the legs -- especially calves. The trick is to get into the ice water as soon as possible after your workout is complete, and then repeat it every 12 hours for about 15 minutes. So if you think you had a particularly strong leg workout, anticipate the DOMS and take some proactive measures. This can help lessen the stiffness and tenderness.

    Also, there is some evidence that "active rest" -- basically a light-weight workout of the affected muscles either later in the day or the next day -- can alleviate some of the stiffness and mobility issues.

    Legs -- especially calves -- seem to be particularly prone to DOMS. It's even more pronounced if you are using a slower pace on the downward motion during things like squats or deadlifts, or are holding the peak contraction during calf raises. This puts a lot more emphasis on the eccentric contraction, which has a very strong correlation with DOMS. The good thing is that eccentric contractions are also associated with greater gains in strength and mass, so if you can tolerate the DOMS, performing your exercises this way is typically a good thing.

    Stretching and massage for the most part seem pretty ineffective at treating DOMS, although they can help with mobility or at least provide some fleeting relief.

    In your case, I would try the ice baths and get back in the gym and perform some very light-resistance versions of the exercises that got you here in the first place.

    Also, you didn't mention when the last time was that you worked your legs this hard, but typically DOMS decreases in severity as your work the muscles more frequently. Adaptations seem to happen at both the neurological and cellular levels.

    Finally, make sure you are giving yourself a few light-weight warm-up sets. This seems to help reduce post-exercise soreness, even when performing more intense eccentric exercises.

    If you really want to get down in the weeds on DOMS, you can check out the following article:

    Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS): Treating and Preventing A Bad Case of the Doms

    Best of luck!
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    Originally Posted by TheFitnessNerd View Post
    Stretching and massage for the most part seem pretty ineffective at treating DOMS...
    Don't tell that to my husband. I love the massages he gives me for my DOMS. I'm also a big fan of Epson Salt baths.
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    Bulking freebirdmac's Avatar
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    What's with people resurrecting old threads? This one was a year old.
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  19. #19
    Registered User Bigdaddybodean's Avatar
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    So far im pretty sure I have found the cure for DOMS, Infrared Sauna. My wife bought one and I never used it, but I decided to start using it after workouts to see if helped. Well so far if I use the sauna for as little as 20min i have no soreness at all. I have even tested it out by not using it for a week and once again back to soreness.
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  20. #20
    Registered User HopeSmallwonder's Avatar
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    The more consistant you are the less you will feel the DOMS. Also concider a post workout ( if your not already taking one) that has Glutamine, electrolytes and BCAA, all 3 combined will help recovery and restore your muscles so they are not to sore. I take a drink like this 2x a day. Once either midday or after my workout and before bed. It helps A LOT!
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  21. #21
    Plain Jane Who Lifts **** kimm4's Avatar
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    Thread is from 07...hopefully OP has figured it out...
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    Registered User joecushing's Avatar
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    I read everyone's responses. There are three I want to stress. Doms decrease with repeated workouts. Light exercise such as walking on a sore leg provides immediate relief, so don't skip the cardio. Sleep is a must to heal sore muscles.
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    Back at square one wakechica's Avatar
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    cold/ice bath for as long as you can bear it followed by hot shower usually does the trick for me. Plus lots of protein and sleep.

    I get in the tub and fill it while im in it. Find it more bearable. And only go up to my waist so I can keep a sweater on!
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    Hello. And Bye.
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