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Muscle soreness and delayed onset muscle soreness from working out is one of the most misunderstood and debated elements of training. Are you supposed to be sore after your workouts or is it something that is getting in the way of your muscle growth. In this video, I discuss the most effective way to create muscle soreness in your workouts and more importantly help you to determine whether this is something you should be chasing in order to grow.

We start with the concept of muscle soreness itself. Generally, this is something you should feel within the belly of the muscle and not necessarily only at the tendinous attachments of the muscle across a joint or joints. When your tendons are sore and achy and the muscles themselves are not, this is a pretty good indication that you did not necessarily do a good thing for your body with your training. You may have inflamed the joint rather than positively stimulated the muscle.

That said, assuming you have properly targeted the muscle you have to understand what you did to cause this. Eccentric or negative training is the most effective way to elicit muscle soreness and post workout soreness because of the mechanical damage you are doing to the muscle when you use it. For instance, concentric training is the portion of the rep in which you place tension on a muscle but do so while shortening the muscle.

With an absence of elongation of the muscle (combined with the tension) you are omitting a large contributor to muscle soreness and breakdown. In fact, with a complete absence of eccentric load, it is feasible that you could perform a workout on back to back days for the same muscle group because the positive focused workout will not leave you too sore to do the workout on the next day.

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Understanding this however is a key to maximizing your muscle growth. You cannot just swing the weights around and hope to get enough mechanical stress and damage that would cause your muscles to have to grow back bigger and stronger. You have to slow down your eccentric contraction on every rep if you want to overload the muscles and subject them to a stimulus strong enough to cause reactive muscle growth.

That being said, even if you do perform your workout in the proper fashion and are left feeling sore the next day or days, if you do not support your efforts in the gym with a dedication to proper nutrition, supplementation and rest or sleep you will not grow. It’s as simple as that. Rest and recovery are paramount to a natural lifters ability to grow muscles from their workouts. If you are not paying attention to these aspects of your training and day (often accountable to up to 23 hours in a day) you will not see the muscle growth you should be seeing from your workouts.

For a complete step by step workout and nutrition plan that puts the science back in strength and helps you to build muscle faster than any other program, be sure to head to and get the ATHLEAN-X Training System. Start training like an athlete and prioritize your recovery as you train like a beast to start seeing your best results ever.

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By Chris Wright

Chris has spent many years working and teaching in the IT field. He enjoys spending time outdoors and learning about new topics. He likes playing golf, spending time at the beach and working on classic cars and woodworking projects.

59 thoughts on “Muscle Soreness Explained (IS IT GOOD?)”
    1. he is ripped to the point its hard to believe its attainable natty. jeff claims to be natural but he doesnt look so, if you are a natty guy that does gym a lot you will either get small but ripped or big with some portion of bodyfat. watch some videos from nicks strength and power, he is a stronk muscular guy but when he decided to shred himself he lost so much weight he weighted like a girl. meanwhile jeffs bodymass is somewhat decent, especially for this level of being shredded

    1. Miguel mejia no, bottom line is if you’re sore after a workout you did it right and if you’re even more swore the next day then you know you definitely tore your muscle fibers. After that just let it recover and work on another part of your body that isn’t swore.

    2. Frank Logrim of course! You should actively train recovery when you’re sore to push blood through your muscles and improve growth.

      But the focus is on just moving more blood / mobility to the area, not necessarily making more soreness.

      There’s like an art to it.

    1. I agree.. I kind of stumbled into having to figure it out myself.. Then i find this guy. And found that i was on the right track amd learned so much more. He just makes sense.

    1. @RICKI What if i don’t change my chest routine for 5 months for example: I do as many pushups as i can for 5 sets of 70 seconds,i do this once a week and let my muscle rest for 6 days

    2. @Isildur Son of elendil I assume you are doing them as fast as you can, since you are trying to pump out as many as you can in 70 seconds.

      You could switch between lets say, 50 seconds of doing fast pushups (still controlled and proper form) & then maybe 80 seconds of slow, controlled pushups.

    3. Lol I just started working out and man I haven’t slept during the two days that I went to gym cus if the soreness it’s killing me the shoulders and biceps

    1. @Premixed Doge I dont know exactly, but the idea of cutting fat% to get sharp cuts is counter intuitive. I have trouble reaching my BMI so if I cut down my fat it will decrease my weight, it will make me weaker right?

    2. @raymund usi look up UFpwrlifter for a good example of not needing to weigh a lot to be strong. Also you don’t need to try and lose weight what I was trying to get at with an amazing diet was eating healthy proteins, healthier fats, nutrient dense foods, but still getting 3000 to 4000 calories a day so that he can still put on muscle.

    3. GamersBienvenidos I honestly don’t think he uses roids, his physique isn’t amazing by any standards, it’s damn better than my physique, but he’s not Arnold. That being said if he was on roids he’d probably look like Arnold is my point, no one takes roids to look average. Along with he’s been weightlifting since the 90’s maybe even 80’s, there’s videos of him in high school and he had pretty big arms naturally. He’s also relatively short framed, 5’7 I believe. So i think it’s just he’s trained for so many years, anyone with 25 plus years is normally huge and shredded

    4. raymund usi
      Tbh, you don’t have to cut down fat % as much as you’d think. You don’t have to lose fat to get cut. You just have to gain muscle. The more muscle you gain, while keeping the same amount of fat, the lower your fat % will be. You don’t have to stop eating fatty foods. You just need to eat more protein and do strength training. Besides, fat is good for you. We evolved to crave fatty foods, because fat keeps us alive. You simply need the right kinds of fats.

      The world’s strongest men have probably anywhere from 5-10% or *_more_* fat. Look at Halfthor Bjornsson. He’s ripped, sure, but he also has loads of fat.

      This guy just doesn’t have a lot of fat. To reiterate, you don’t need to lose fat to look cut, you just need to gain muscle. The more you gain, the lower your fat % will be, naturally.

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