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clearing lactic acid with PW cardio

Guys, when using a rep range that accumulates lactic acid, say 10-25 reps, is it desireable to clear the lactic acid with low-intensity aerobics post-workout? Or is keeping that lactic acid around advantageous for a growth stimulus or fat loss (like in Meltdown I as a cutting or hypertrophy plan)?

Lactic acid is fluched out of the muscles very quicky after training, cardio isn’t needed to flush it out, it’s already gone.

As for clearing, I mean the waste products that come with “the burn” which lactic acid causes.

No you do not want lactic acid around. You can do light cardio on the muscles you have trained to flush out the lactic acid. I do not know how much lactic acid build up is caused by weights. When I had a hard day cycling the next day was usually and easy spin to flush out any remaining L.C… Also I would elevate the legs after the training session and work the muscles(with a massage roller). I would do it in a down stroke to force out the L.C. towards the heart.

I believe cardio does help with flushing out lactic acid, but it’s usually gone after 3-4 hours post workout anyway.

I don’t think it’s beneficial or harmful, but I’m not qualified to answer the question.


Lactate is cleared very fast. it does not cause soreness and is not around the next day. This was cleared up in Exercise Science about two decades ago.

Lactic acid doesn’t cause DOMS, but it does cause “the burn” during the set.

But that burn is gone and then thats it.

Goldberg is correct. Most lactic acid is flushed out within about a minute, along with any burn that it caused.

I have to disagree. Lactic acid does not dissappear at the drop of a hat. You have to incorporate a active rest period in you recovery. It does not cause muscle soreness and massage does not help(I thought it did).

Please read :http://www.uoregon.edu/~iishp/Vannat.html

What about other benefits of post-workout cardio? Enhanced blood flow to the muscles will supply oxygen and nutrients, as well as facilitate removal of metabolic by-products. Depending on an individuals capillary density, lactic acid and the associated hydrogen ions will also be removed.

Upon removal of the H+ from the acid, lactate can then be shuttled, via the bloodstream, to the liver for gluconeogenesis.

In addition, you get increased energy expenditure and glycogen utilization. The latter creates more economy for carbohydrate to be eaten and more efficiently stored in the muscle due to heightened insulin sensitivity.

lactic acid dissapears within minutes and is metabolized as part of the krebs cycle. It is a common mistake to associate DOMS with lactic acid, however there are many other toxins that build up along with the microtears in the muscles which are what really cause soreness. Post workout restoration methods are often necessary to alleviate these problems, exercise increases bloodflow to the muscles and brings nutrients in and takes toxins away promoting recovery.

I think this is kinda overkill. I believe this time is better spent sipping the post workout drink and wacking off or whatever it is you do after your workout. I can tell you that there is no way i would have been able to do any type of aerobic exercise after my session today because i was almost dead. And why the negativity towards lactate. Its been shown to increase testosterone and growth hormone. Why would we want to get rid of something that gives us more of those?

OGuard (and Timbo) and Goldberg, the merit I see in each of your positions is what caused me to ask the question in the first place. To make the question practical: Let’s say I do GVT or Meltdown I, would a 5-10 minute aerobic “cool-down” assist recovery or hold back gains?

Speaking of DOMS, I know that lactic acid does not cause it. Lactic acid just causes the “burn”…so what actually does cause DOMS? Is if the minute muscle tears?? I am assuming that is what it is! Then again, you know what they say when you assume something…haha.

Brian Smith…I would think that 5-10 minutes of low/moderate cardio after a training session would be more beneficial than negative. Just think about it…as Timbo suggested, you will have more blood flow to the muscles which will result in more oxygen and nutrient uptake. It makes sense really…especially when you factor in the importance of post-workout nutrition. Low/moderate cardio after training will only make your body more efficient at shuttling those nutrients more quickly to your muscles to replenish glycogen stores. Not to mention the added caloric expenditure already mentioned (again, from Timbo). Which means more carbs…YUM! All in all…5-10 minutes has for more advantages than negatives to say the least. The only way I could see it being detrimental is if you went balls out at 80%+ of max heart rate, which could sacrifice all that hard earned lean muscle mass in the long run. But as long as you keep it low/moderate intensity, you should be good to go my man!

Bravo, Goldie!

Goldberg-Excellent point.

Brian-I’d say that a high volume program such as GVT would be a contraindication to post-training aerobic activity. In other moderate volume situations, however, it would be appropriate.

I don’t know about clearing lactic acid but my post workout cardio sessions (20-25 minutes) do help out with my DOMS. A heavy squat session will normally leave me limping for a week but a little cardio afterwards will allow me to work almost like a human in two days… something is happening there.

Poliquin has also spoke out against a post workout cool down. He thought they were silly.

I am not sure how much a cool down really helps in recovery, I know I could not manage to do any real cardio after my dynamic squat day with bands. I think what Louie Simmons suggests is best, which is to facilitate recovery through extra workouts, these are short and can be done later in the day or the next day to speed up recovery. Sled dragging for instance is a great recovery tool.