T Nation

Sore as hell and need some help

OK stop laughing out there this is a real question. For the past few years now I seem to wake up every morning feeling like someone put me in a sack and beat me with a bat. Every day the same, only the muscles vary depending on what the last work out was. I loved the Mag-10 cycle because it actually reduced the soreness for two weeks, now i’m in recovery and OUCH!!!again back to normal. Any ideas gang or is it just normal for an over the hill 55 year old??

Well, soreness is a tough one to crack. Make sure you have excellent post-workout nutrition - that is step one. Passive stretching after a workout usually helps. Doing some very light intensity work and stretching on the sore bodyparts the day after a workout should also help.

Another idea is to change up your workouts, so that you are working body parts more frequently, but with less volume per workout. If you are only hitting each body part once a week or even less frequently, you may begin to decondition and soreness will be more common. Increasing the frequency of your workouts should help, but remember to cut back on the volume.

Contrast baths and ice cups.
Ice cups- Buy some paper dixie cups. Fill them with water and freeze. After your workout, massage the muscles you just worked using the ice cup and peel away as needed till its gone.
Contrast bath- after your workout start off in warm water for 2 min, then into ice filled water for 30 seconds or as long as you can take it. Then back to the hot water for 2 min then back to cold water for 30 seconds or as long as you can take it. Then end in a warm shower to warm yourself back up. Both of these help tremendously.

There is some great information at the charliefrancis.com forum. Specifically they describe ice baths or cold showers. The idea is to start with a cold shower or bath. This reduces the swelling brought on by resistant training. The recommendation is a minimum of 15 minutes exposure to the cold water. They even recommend a specific water temp (55 degrees I think). They also state that you should not start with a hot shower, sauna or steam as this will promote excessive swelling in the affected muscle and therefore longer recovery required. I have been trying it (15 minutes in a cold shower is tough!) and feel it is helping improve my recovery. At 43 years old I need all the recovery help I can get.

Sounds like you’re overtrained. Take a week off, drink lots of H2O then take it easy for a few weeks. The goal of bodybuilding is to lift weight and get bigger, not to make yourself sore. As Charles Stanely has once said, “If your goal is to be sore, let me run over you with my car, it will be much more effective.” Best of luck.

I’ve found that Vitamins C and E work wonders for recovery as you get older. Also, you might try some Tribex.

are you improving in your strentgh goals and musle developement? if not then you are overtraining. reduce volume of your workouts and eat more protein. take stuff to boost your protein synthesis. laters pk

Jason is right on. I think that if you ingreased your work capacity you wouldn’t get as sore. You should ease your way into GPP. This will help with active recovery and improve work capacity. Try training your muscles 2 days/week and cut down on your volume/day. Do a little GPP to help (maybe 3x/week). It’s funny, since I’ve began renegade Training I never get sore (not counting the first 2 weeks)

I’d second Jason N’s recommendations. Also, maybe start taking 6-9g of fish oil every day. That will help reduce the inflammation from working out, and thus reduce the soreness.

Post-workout nutrition and increasing your work capacity are key, but most people seem to underestimate the recovery power of active recovery workouts and other restorative techniques as outlined by Dr. Siff and Dr. Yesis. The contrast baths not showers are key and can be very useful in decreasing soreness post workout. At a Supertraining Camp hosted by Dr. Siff, he informed us that it is the temperature change between the hot and cold that are necessary not just any hot and any cold bath will do. He suggested cold temps of 55-62 degrees F or so and hot temps of 102-106 degrees F. If you start in the whirl pool for 60seconds or so then go swim laps in a pool that is 62F for 60sec and repeat 2 times you willnotice tremendous improvements in recovery and decreased post exercise soreness. Obviously as effectifve as this method is it’s limited if you dont have access to a hot bath and a cold bath that are at the appropriate temps and are right next to each other.

I am a member of this club! And it is not fun. The good news is you can do something about it. Let’s start with your bed. How old is it? Is it the right bed for you?
After solving the the bed problem, lets look at you wake-up ritual. Have you ever noticed how cats stretch, then they get up and stretch again. You should do the same. After that, I usually do a movement routine (similiar to a warm-up for karate) before I get to a short yoga rotuine then a slow kata followed by my morning aerobics. Also try a added as many of the above sugguestions that relate to you. Best of Luck.

Shane, you’ve got some really good advice here, but we are mostly just shooting in the dark because we need more details to actually help you out. So please let us know if any of this advice applies or makes sense to you and also if you have any more questions we can clear up.

Thanks Guys! Actually I follow a pretty hard diet and workout regeme and have been doing so for 3-4 years now. The improvements are , like for nost of us, in spurts followed with periods of just sloging along. I always have a during and after workout proteen drink and 3-4 more during the day. Eating well isn’t easy with my work as my offices are in a hotel with typical hotel food. I have been following the Mag-10 program like it was Gods given word rest days and all. Only doing the exercises on the schedule ( which for me seems rather light, but I do it) so I truly doubt its over training. And eating as best I can. The strange thing which I mentioned on other threads is that when I’m doing the MAG-10 I feel very little soreness in the mornings yet I work so hard that I feel I may not be able to get out of the gym on all fours without help. Then as soon as I go into the recovery stage BOOM there it is again. I’m trying Older lifters suggestions and a few others and will give my feed back for all to profit from. The baths are just not on for me as me and cold water have never been real good friends. Yea I’m a whimp that way but no ones perfect. I’m happy with myself and my body but some mornings I just wish I had a spare body to use while the other one recovers. Just a note, I walk rapidly to and from my work every day, about 7 kms in all, with about 15kgs in my shoulder pack as cardio.Then again I’ve done that for years.

Do you take any rest weeks or unloading weeks? In a 13 week period (1/4 of a year), I would suggest taking at least one unloading week (1/2 training volume) and one full week off. This could even be increased to an unloading week every 4 weeks and then an off week at the end of 12.

Sounds to me like your problem is nutrition based. Good pre- and post-workout nutrition won’t make up for an overall lack of vitamins/nutrients otherwise. I’d start with a multi-vitamin at the least, and make a concerted effort to get more veggies and fruit in your diet. See if that doesn’t help.

Shane, one last thing I would add to all the good advice you’ve been given so far . . . Traumeel. It’s an arnica-based homeopathic gel made in Germany. Sometimes it goes by the name of Traumed. Either way, it’s one of the VERY few analgesic type gels/creams I’ve used that provided me any pain relief. I actually use it for bruises as well as sore muscles. It was recommended on this site by one of the DC docs.

All good advice here thanks guys. Well the eating is always a problem but I always have a pre ( 1 hour before) during and after work out shake of preety much all protien. As to vitamins I like the Animal Pak which I have used for years now. In fact its a joke in my house that I get half my food intake from one pill / tablet or the other. What with the recovery cycle being Tribex and M plus the Myostat thats one big hand full twice a day. I have split the mess into three times a day just for comforts sake. After today I fully intend to have a protien shake beside the bed every night. I mean can’t hurt right? The early morning streching and light exercises as suggested by older lifter is helping some what. Maybe its just us old farts that have these problems and no other choice than to suffer along with a smile. :o}))