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Lumby, Lavington, Whitevale, Coldstream, Vernon & Cherryville

Your Community Newspaper

Lumby, Lavington, Whitevale, Coldstream, Vernon & Cherryville

Your Community Newspaper

Lumby, Lavington, Whitevale, Coldstream, Vernon & Cherryville

Exercise Pain – What’s Good, What’s Bad

Pain is a complex and subjective sensory and emotional experience that is typically associated with tissue damage or injury. It serves as a protective mechanism, alerting the body to potential harm and prompting appropriate responses to prevent further damage. Pain can be acute or chronic. Acute pain is sudden and short-lived, while chronic pain is persistent and can last for weeks, months or years.

Then there is workout pain, which some thrive off, and the result is good pain – “no pain no gain.” This type of pain comes from progress or results in fitness or other areas of life requires pushing through challenges, discomfort, and hard work. If new to exercise many people may confuse this as “bad pain,” and unfortunately quit their journey. Pushing past some good pain is beneficial and healthy to our overall well being.

It is important though to distinguishing between good workout pain and bad workout pain. While exercise can be challenging and might cause discomfort, there are certain signs that can help you differentiate between normal muscle soreness and potentially harmful pain. 

Good Workout Pain

  • Tightness and Stiffness: Improvement and growth often come from pushing your limits and stepping outside of your comfort zone. In either case this may make you feel uncomfortable or fatigued. You might feel some tightness and stiffness in the muscles you worked, particularly when you move or stretch. This is usually a sign that your muscles are adapting to the workout.
  • Gradual Onset: Muscle soreness usually develops gradually after the workout. It’s not immediate and doesn’t feel sharp or intense right after exercising.
  • Symmetrical Discomfort: The soreness should be similar on both sides of the body if you worked both sides equally. For instance, if you did squats, you might feel soreness in both legs.
  • DOMS – Delayed onset muscle soreness: This often may be perceived as really good pain by seasoned athletes or long-time gym goers and they thrive off this pain. If you are new to exercise, I am sure you will feel this as bad pain. Feeling muscle soreness or discomfort after a workout is normal and can indicate that you’ve effectively stimulated your muscles. This type of soreness, usually resolves within a few days and is part of the adaptation process. DOMS is common after a challenging workout, especially if you’re trying new exercises or increasing intensity. It typically develops within 24 to 72 hours after exercise and involves a dull ache or soreness in the muscles worked. It can be pretty intense and your normal daily movement may feel greatly hindered. 

Bad Workout Pain

  • Sharp Pain: Sharp, stabbing, or intense pain during or after exercise is usually a sign that something is wrong and exercise should stop immediately.
  • Localized Pain: Pain that is very specific to a joint, muscle, or area of your body that might indicate an injury. This is different from the overall muscle soreness you’d expect after a workout.
  • Pain Accompanied by Swelling or Bruising: If you notice significant swelling, bruising, or joint instability, you most likely have injured yourself.
  • Persistent Pain: Pain that doesn’t improve or worsens over time, even with rest and proper care, should be taken seriously.
  • Pain That Impairs Movement: If your pain prevents you from moving normally or affects your daily activities, it’s a sign that you need to seek medical attention. This is not to be confused with DOMS above. This would be more of an example of a back type injury. 

Mikkie Nettles-Pollon, Certified Personal Trainer
/Holistic & Sports Nutritionist

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or contact info@deemhealth.ca
672-572-1690

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