Question Regarding Soreness

Haven’t seen this question asked in other threads, but what are your thoughts on soreness?

Should we be satisfied being sore or not being sore after a workout? I know it generally isn’t a requirement for growth, but it’s something I’ve always judged my effort on.

I mean so far using these methods I’ve been relatively sore a day or two and sometimes three after. I’m utilizing mostly a full-body or upper/lower split for training I’ve waited til I’ve recovered to begin my next session for that muscle group. Should I be waiting or is training while sore a necessity on this protocol and the IBB program in general? (I’m practicing Perfect Reps, 8x3 sets etc. but haven’t started the IBB routine just yet.)

Thanks Thib!

Its simply not necessary.

In order to build muscle you have to:

  1. Fatigue all muscle fibers (especially fast twitch muscles)

  2. Progressively fatigue them over time as they adapt (more load/reps, less rest periods etc).

Thats all that you need. Muscle microtrauma is a very small contributor to muscular growth. If it were a large one, then getting hit by a car (which would cause LOTS of muscular trauma) would make you huge!

[quote]forbes wrote:
Muscle microtrauma is a very small contributor to muscular growth. If it were a large one, then getting hit by a car (which would cause LOTS of muscular trauma) would make you huge![/quote]

I sometimes wish all of the Friday night curlers would test that theory. Does that make me evil?


Ok, so soreness isn’t nessisary, I kind of already knew that one… but I like to ask again cause I really like “feeling” like I worked hard. Thanks for the response to that!

So working out while still sore, good/bad or somewhere inbetween? It just looks like there would be a lot of overlap on the IBB program where I would probably still be sore in some areas working the day after or so, and that won’t hinder growth by not fully recovering between workouts? I mean I would be mentally ready, but physically feeling the effects of the previous days work.

I mean I’ve read similar things from Chad Waterbury (not that he pionered the method, just another source who preaches the method) where he would have his clients build up to doing 5-6 total body workouts each week, sometimes 2-a-days, and they would grow very well on these programs.

So I’m sort of answering my own question that you can work out while sore or still recovering from previous workouts, I guess I’m just not sure why when there are methods like DC who wait 5 days before training the same muscle groups (there is SOME overlap on the A and B days, but not alot).

Anyways, it would be cool if I could get CT’s opinions and explanations of these things to put my mind at ease, :slight_smile:

I think (think) that CT would agree that its ok to train a muscle if its sore. As long as it it not excruciatingly painful to move it, you’re fine.

I believe he has stated that Olympic lifters squat up to 5 days a week (which would involve the quads, glutes and lower back extensively) however you don’t see them over training now do you? The muscles that get trained the most tend to be the most developed.

Yeah, definitely…

For me, personally, I haven’t experienced much soreness while following the I, BB program and utilizing the Anaconda Protocol. The protocol diminishes soreness and increases recovery to such a degree, I’ve pretty much had zero problems with soreness.

Plus, by not training to failure, completely dominating each rep of each set, and training the same muscle group (as you’re doing in a specilization focus) 3 times per week, will also lead to less soreness.

You may experience some soreness when starting a new phase and movement patterns, but for the reasons mentioned above, the soreness in my experience, is never debilitating and for damn sure doesn’t require a few days off before working the same muscle group.

The overall volume of each workout is relatively low. Yes, by autoregulating it can also be very high within a workout, but if the average sets per exercise is around 6 sets, with the first three being between the 60-75% of your 1RM range, it hasn’t produced much soreness for me. The muscles will feel more “tight” than sore, and hardly ever sore to the touch.

A good illustation of this would be to:

Option 1 (using upper body push muscles as an example)
Do the typical chest, shoulder, tricep workout that consists of as many as 25 sets once a week…you’ll be much more sore from only onc high volume exposure per week.

Compare that to:

Option 2 I,BB spec focus on chest (as well as the other pushing muscles, shoulders and triceps)

The overall volume is actually higher, utilizing higher % of your 1RM, but it’s split up into 3 different workouts throughout the week. Add the Anaconda protocol on top of that, and your chances of being sore are very low.

Most everyone using the I,BB program and Anaconda are reporting much larger gains in strength, size, and recovery across the board compared to their old training methods.

This to me, proves soreness doesn’t lead to additional gains, but rather a higher frequency of training, faster recovery, utilizing higher loads and lower reps done explosively and perfectly, does. As well, as a massive influx of key nutrients around workout time from the Anaconda Protocol

Makes sense to me and has proven so in my own training.

Agree with the point of volume/frequency.

I used to do the old once a week one muscle group high volume, and while it was great for strength and I got very sore, my results were not as good as shifting to a split with higher frequency but less volume.

I do agree too that the DOM’s the days after training are somewhat rewarding…but I would say it is a psychological thing, wanted to feel like that hard workout is making muscles grow…because you can’t feel muscles grow.

Soreness is not an indication of progress, but as long as it happens only when you do something you are not used to, it isn’t an indication of not having recovered enough either. Instead your training log should tell you if you are on the right track. If your lifts are progressing, the soreness was not an issue. If you stagnate, or lose a rep or a few pounds, you weren’t ready.

If you are sore all the time, even when you should be used to you exercises, it is however a sign that you are working beyond your capability for recovery. Unless you are an advanced athlete who uses the principle of overreach followed by deload, frequent soreness should tell you to slow down a little.

That’s my opinion anyway.

I have 2 sentences:

Regular soreness is not essential for muscle growth.
If you never get sore, you aren’t working hard enough.

Yes, I know they sound contradictory, but think about it.