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Workout Pain You Should Never Ignore

Workout Pain You Should Never Ignore


The saying “no pain, no gain” is growing incredibly more popular as people in boot camps, HIIT classes and cross fit groups push themselves to their limits.

We all know the feeling of not being able to sit down without the burn, or struggling to lift your hairdryer to style your hair after a gruelling workout. There is however, a real difference between general muscle soreness and workout pain you shouldn’t ignore.

The longer you wait to attend to your pain or injury, the more chronic it can become. Brushing off the pain can potentially put you out of action for a much longer period or result in other injuries.


Here’s 5 types of workout pain you need to listen to:

1. Pinch or sharp pain
Don’t ever ignore work out pain that feels like a sharp or pinching sensation. This usually means there is something functionally wrong with a particular system resulting in inflammation of a muscle/tendon. If there is a pinch in the joint, the tendon becomes inflamed resulting in less space in the capsules.

If you continue to train, the pinching is repeated which can lead to tendonitis or a knock on injury. Check your form to ensure you’re activating the right muscles during each exercise. Often an imbalance in the over-active and under-active muscles can be the cause of the pain, so make sure your technique is on point.


2. Tingling
Feeling a tingling sensation is a red flag as it usually implies there is a nerve involved. You’ll want to stop what you’re doing immediately if you experience this workout pain and see a health professional.

Your nerves are like a phone line facilitating a constant conversation from the brain to the muscles, telling them when to activate and when to relax. If this becomes impaired, the nerves surrounding that particular muscle react by creating a tingling sensation.


3. Swelling
Where this is swelling associated with workout pain, it can be quite serious especially if it persists. If you’ve injured an area, the body’s normal reaction is to send inflammatory factors to the site of pain. Unfortunately, the body can’t always differentiate which structure it needs to heal, so various substances including blood are transported to the joint which results in swelling.

Swelling with pain is telling you to rest your injury. It usually will go down by itself, but if it does persist it’s a sign there is more serious tissue or structural damage.


4. Pops
Heard a pop before experiencing pain? Time to stop running, boxing or swinging kettle bells and rest. A popping sound is often a sign of a tear of a tendon or ligament, or even partial dislocation, hence the severe pain.

If it’s clicking or grinding you’re experiencing in knees, shoulders or other joints without any pain, this isn’t as concerning.


5. Localised pain
Overall soreness of your muscles such as your glutes, back or abdomen generally in a sign you’ve put in everything and pushed yourself to the max throughout your session. However, if you’re experiencing workout pain just in one place, you shouldn’t ignore it.

Lingering sharp pain in your groin for example, should get checked out ASAP. If it resolves after you’ve completed a specific exercise, ensure your technique is correct before attempting it again.

Tip: If you’re regularly experiencing muscle soreness after a workout, try taking some magnesium supplements.


Stop what you’re doing when you experience workout pain
Discomfort and general soreness during exercise is pretty normal but pain isn’t, and it’s a sign you need to stop and rest up. Where you have experienced an injury, immediately icing it and taking anti-inflammatories can be helpful.

Stretching is important to prevent injuries, and can also help relieve some workout pain. Remember to listen to your body as you know it best. If you don’t see an improvement within a week of resting your injury, it’s important to see a health professional, such as a physio.