Adam welcomes his mentor, Robert Francis—exercise historian, spinal rehabilitation specialist, machine designer, master exercise instructor and instructor at InForm Fitness. On the first of a series of episodes, Adam & Robert delve into the misunderstood and controversial topic of muscle soreness.
- Is soreness necessary for strength gains? And if so, do you need constant variation and routine changes to consistently get sore and see progress?
- What is, ‘The motor learning mirage’
- What causes muscle soreness?
- Why some muscle groups get sore and others don’t.
- How sore is sore enough--Macro trauma vs. micro trauma.
While it’s understood that muscle soreness is, generally, a good thing, we wrap up this episode discussing ways you can mitigate muscle soreness such as getting good sleep, staying hydrated, taking contrast baths, and eating well.
We would love to hear from you with your questions, comments & show ideas…
As always, your feedback and suggestions are always welcome.
Adam Zickerman – Power of 10: The Once-A-Week Slow Motion Fitness Revolution:
Inform_R FRANCIS Ep 69 Transcript
What is The InForm Fitness Podcast?
Now listened to in over 70 countries, The InForm Fitness Podcast with Adam Zickerman is a presentation of InForm Fitness Studios, specializing in safe, efficient, High Intensity strength training.
Adam discusses the latest findings in the areas of exercise, nutrition and recovery with leading experts and scientists. We aim to debunk the popular misconceptions and urban myths that are so prevalent in the fields of health and fitness and to replace those sacred cows with scientific-based, up-to-the-minute information on a variety of subjects. The topics covered include exercise protocols and techniques, nutrition, sleep, recovery, the role of genetics in the response to exercise, and much more.
Inform_R FRANCIS Ep 69
sore, exercise, muscles, muscle soreness, soreness, people, machine, extension, robert, stimulus, workout, nautilus, knee, weight, degree, lowering, enigmas, contraction, resistance, negative
The Inform fitness podcast with Adam Zickerman and co host Mike Rogers is a presentation of informed fitness studios, a small family of personal training facilities specializing in safe, efficient high intensity strength training. On our BI monthly podcast, Adam and Mike discuss the latest findings in the areas of exercise nutrition and recovery with leading experts and scientists, we aim to debunk the popular misconceptions in the urban myths that are so prevalent in the fields of health and fitness, and to replace those sacred cows with scientific base. up to the minute information on a variety of subjects will cover exercise protocols and techniques, nutrition, sleep recovery, the role of genetics in the response to exercise, and much more. For this episode, Adam welcomes his mentor, Robert Francis, exercise historian, spinal rehabilitation specialist, machine designer, Master exercise instructor, and instructor at informed fitness. On the first of a series of episodes, Adam and Robert will delve into the misunderstood and controversial topic of muscle soreness.
I can remember a day in the 11th grade when I couldn't walk up the stairs in school. And I got in a lot of trouble because I missed a couple of classes. I'd never had soreness like that again.
Hello, everybody. Welcome back. This is a very special episode for me. Because I'm here with Robert Francis. Robert Francis and I go back over 20 years. He's one of the reasons one of the main reasons one of maybe five people I can probably say that got me into this business, I wouldn't be where I am right now, if it wasn't for Robert and a handful of other people. Ken Hutchins, Ken leissner, Rob Cirino, Robert Francis, Arthur Jones, of course, truth be told, I wouldn't have met Robert Francis, if it wasn't for big drew Israel. So Robert now works with inform fitness. So to have my mentor working with me, is really special. It's one of the most special aspects of my career, to be honest with you being able to work side by side with this guy in my Port Washington location. He is a font of information. He has been at this business. He has been doing this as an exercise instructor since 1981. And just to give you an idea, I've been doing this for 23 years, and I started in 97. All right, he's a real pro. He knows everything about the iron game weight training, he is he has special interest in bodybuilding, the strongman competitions of old, all the Scottish games and all those crazy strongman competitions. You know, it's about the original dumbbells and all the pioneers in 1800s, about this. He just is a true true historian when it comes to exercise. And he's probably trained 1000s and 1000s of people. Of course, he's certified as an instructor. He has a degree in Exercise Science. He's also certified as a medical testing and rehabilitation technician. And that's a special designation because those medics testing machines are really special, and very technical. And you have to know what you're doing. He's using a rehab setting for a long time as well. So today, we're going to talk about, I mean, first of all, I can talk to him about a million subjects, and we're going to do a whole series of videos with him. I don't know why haven't done this before. But today's topic is going to be on muscle soreness. muscle soreness is a bit of an enigma. We all have our impressions of it. And there's a lot of misunderstanding about muscle soreness. So we're gonna get into that for the next 20 minutes or so. Maybe half an hour, I might run a little bit over. He's a little long winded, so forgive him. But he's so so informative. So gonna give him a little. He's my mentor. So I got to give him a little little leeway. So welcome, Robert Francis. Hi.
Well, thank you, Adam. That is very, very generous of you. I have got to do more of these. In fact, I'd like to listen to you a lot longer.
Especially when I compliment you like, Oh, that was better. It ends though.
That was a very, very short nap. So now I gotta earn my money. No more
asked kissing. So muscle soreness, Robert, we're gonna get deep into that. But before we go into exactly what exercise induced muscle soreness is, you've been at this a long time as I just mentioned, so why don't you share your experiences since 1981 on muscle soreness
I have a fairly long and very intimate relationship with muscle soreness. And I can remember the day after the first workout I took my coach who gave me my workout program asked me about, are you sore? And I remember saying, No, I didn't seem to feel sore, maybe I didn't know what I was looking for. But I told him, No, I wasn't sore, and he had a look on his face like, well, you're gonna have to get better at this, we're gonna, we're gonna have to get more serious if you're going to do anything with this. And so over the years, I got very, very good. And I focused on trying to do the things that would make me sore. Look for the hardest exercises, I did them the hardest way I could find and got very good at getting very sore in the 1970s, late 70s and early 80s. Negative training was a form of Nautilus exercise protocol, that was becoming very popular, and it was a means of exercising, that would get people very, very strong very, very quickly.
So Robert, before you move on, just explain negative only training real fast,
there are three levels of force that your muscles are capable of producing. When you're raising a weight, that is what we call the positive stroke, when you're lowering the weight, that's what we call the negative stroke, when you're holding a weight and the muscles length doesn't change, we call that the static or the isometric hold, right? Alright, so in the late 70s, and the, in the early 80s. Training, the negative or the lowering phase of a given exercise had been given a great deal of priority, and it had been explored by Nautilus engineers and technicians. And our attempt was to exploit the negative to wring out a great deal of strength with very, very little work. And what we did was, we would know what a person was capable of lifting, let's say their body weight of 200 pounds in a, let's say, a chin up or a dip. And we would add to that an extra 40%. So we would give additional to the 200 pound body weight weight stack around the belt of maybe as much as 80 pounds. And we would train a person in the lowering phase, now person would get a great deal stronger by just lowering the weight. Of course, the resistance would not be something that somebody could lift, one thing we noticed and learned is that it would cause a great deal of soreness, really, really shattering soreness, and sometimes it would last more than a week, 10 days, sometimes 12 days. But in doing these negative protocols, a lot of times we would have two people, for example on benchpress on each end of the bar, and we would raise a heavier than normal bar so that the person doing the bench press could have the luxury of lowering a much heavier than normal load. And they would do only the negative work only the lowering phase. Now one thing that would hatch right
don't try this at home kids.
Well, you need to he's a muscle
had days when you had these two monsters on both sides of the barbell, hoisting up this weight and you have to pray that this weight doesn't come crashing down your throat
and you need to very close friends and two very willing accomplices and they would not last very long because what you would realize is that when it came your turn to exercise to do your negative work. The other two guys are already taught to tired out half of them are too tired from doing the positive only by raising the weight you have to
you have to draw straws it but Guile draws a straw last is the one that has to go
Zack last Exactly. Well, we would get horrible muscle soreness from this and of course we we enjoyed it because we made the association between shattering muscle soreness, and tremendous growth. We'd also not be able to exercise for a week or 10 days because we'd have to wait until the soreness cleared. Keep in mind both the guys doing the lifting the positive only and the negative only all got sore. So even if you weren't doing the negative only if you were doing just the positive lifting the weight for the trainee. You still got sore nothing close to what the trainee doing the negative work, but you still got sore by 1989. At the medics headquarters were what became the medics headquarters, the old skunkworks of Nautilus where they did their prototyping and their engineering at their headquarters in Ocala. Arthur placed me in a surgical rotation machine. And this machine had no weight stack, it was a precursor for Nautilus, Rotary neck machine, it was a left a left to right rotational movement that had stops every seven to 12 degrees. And it would measure your strength at each of several stops, through an entire range of motion, it was 160 degrees range, they would measure strength at various stops through the range. So every 12 degrees, just about you would stop against a bumper, you would attempt to turn in the contrary direction, as hard as you could against the strain gauge that would measure the force that you were able to put out, you did this at each of several stops in the range first, right to left, then repeating it going left to right. So that you would equally test muscles on both sides of the neck. Now, this was an isometric only test, so there was no lifting, and there was no lowering of any resistance.
You just pushing against basically an immovable object.
That's right, a strain gauge that would although it would measure your the force output like a scale, nothing on the machine would move. So you'd push as hard as you possibly could. And they were contractions that were nine seconds, three seconds to slowly build up the force. push as hard as you can for three seconds holding the force and then slowly withdrawing the force over another three seconds in order not to produce an injury. Again, shattering soreness in part because these muscles aren't used to being exercise in that direction or in any direction really, for the most part, but those muscles became very sore doing just the isometric work.
Alright, Robert, there are certain things that got you very sore, isometric negative only. These are things that get you very sore. So then explain then what is muscle soreness.
Okay, the muscle soreness that we're talking about is to be distinguished from the muscle ache that occurs. During exercise. We're talking about the muscle soreness after an intense exercise. And the literature calls it Dom's or delayed onset muscle soreness. And this is the kind of muscle soreness that starts to set in eight, or even as long as 48 hours after exercise, it can last three four days can last even up to a week. What happens is it it manifests itself as a tenderness, tightness, kind of an achy pain, sometimes it's sometimes it's very, very deep, and sometimes it's just very, very subtle, but it sets in much later after exercise.
Okay, so what's the current thinking with with muscle soreness? Dom's, like you
said at the beginning, that word you used is a word that's used a lot. And that is enigmatic that it's an enigma. But the research tends to focus and has tended to focus for and there's research on this since the 60s, mainly on the the negative the lowering phase of the contraction, lowering a load, as I explained in the way we did negative training. But there are three main theories. And because it's so muddled, I think it's probably a good idea. And in my mind, I just combine all the three theories into one because I think that they all explain it reasonably well. One is that the contraction intensity causes muscle damage, and it manifests itself as micro trauma, the damage to the muscle membrane, the muscle cells as they slide against one another. It causes a certain kind of damage the muscle membrane called the sarcolemma. And what ends up happening is that the muscle damage increases the amount of calcium concentration the calcium sets off a cascade where certain enzymes come in and start to degrade the jacket so to speak of the muscle cells. The science people call that autophagy and it literally means the muscle is eating itself. The third theory is that the damage to the muscles attract specific white blood cells. These cells release prostaglandins and that's what leaves the neurons are, that's what leaves the nerves, nerve endings much more sensitive to stimulus, stimulus to touch, or to stretch or certain movements, that leaves the muscle very, very tender. The end result is that the body has to self repair itself. And the the restoration process is what takes, you know, four or five, five days, sometimes a week, when the muscle soreness sets in, what usually happens is, you have a significantly loss of strength and power, loss of range of motion, because the stretching the muscle too much causes tenderness, and contracting, the muscle becomes irritating. There's less impact resistance. And you also have a greatly reduced sensation of your accuracy of performing work in coaches that have people trained the first first day of practice, they come in the second day of practice, and they think, wow, yeah, they're all sore, but they start the practice and you can be fooled into thinking that you're doing much better. The second day when your your performance is horribly worse, you do have a warped perception of the work that you're able to do. Also, the current thinking is that the Dom's or the delayed onset muscle soreness is not essential to strength improvements or muscular development. It's not, that's the current thinking the current sports medicine thinking is one that you don't need soreness. Yes, that is the current thinking, do you agree with it? No.
Do you think soreness is important? Well, you think you should be getting sore after every workout,
I think that it may not be essential. I think that to some degree. If I go back to the cervical rotation test, I had an intensity of work that had not been experienced before. And that created a very sharp response. So the stimulus elicited something different, that's something certainly changed. And something certainly turned. In my opinion, when the stimulus does induce the muscle soreness, I think that the response is greater.
So when I work out regularly, or a lot when a lot of people workout regularly, they get sore at the beginning, because like you said, they're not used to it, yet. It's a new stimulus for them. But then eventually, people doing the same exercises don't get as sore anymore, are you saying they're either not working out hard enough, going forward, the stimulus wasn't enough. Or maybe they needed to wait longer, because I also noticed that I get sore. If I if I wait a couple of weeks before my next workout, then I'll get sore again.
Well, that could be in the early days of Nautilus, what we had done is we used to tell people, if you have a great deal of muscle soreness the next day, if you if you wake up with a great deal of muscle soreness, come back in we'll help you with it. Of course, we didn't tell them what we were going to do. But what we did was we train them exactly the same way. And the muscle soreness would abate to a great degree. But modifying the placement of exercises can change the stimulus adequately to produce muscle soreness nearly every time.
So that's what he's suggesting, suggesting a lot of variability to create soreness on not
necessary not necessarily because the the thinking with most trainers, the most popular thinking is to change the routine all the time to keep the muscles in quotes guessing. But what that does by changing the exercises and switching everything off, causes what's in Nautilus speak, we always refer to as the motor learning Mirage, what you're getting is you're getting a great deal of muscle soreness every single time. And that's only because your body is so much trying to do the motor learning to learn the exercise because it's not good at it yet, the thing is to do the same exercises and elicit the muscle soreness, you definitely don't get the same muscle soreness with regular training with regular clockwork, every single week. training that you get after a layoff of a month, or six or seven weeks. But some muscle soreness is in my opinion is an indication that you've turned a key. And there are other ways to do it. Then by changing the exercises, how to change the order of the exercise you give priority to the exercises that came at the end of your session. And you place them at the beginning of the session.
And that's enough to create soreness sometimes. I mean, but well this is this is the enigma. I mean just by changing the order you're getting more sore and in your opinion because you got to little sore because you change the order, you got a better stimulus and therefore your muscle is going to continue to get stronger. Otherwise, if you're not getting sore from workout to workout now I know it's not the debilitating soreness that you're talking about from a negative only training back in the 80s. But you're talking about some degree of soreness is an indication of a workout that was stimulus enough for progress. That's my opinion. And just changing the order is enough to well, just doesn't make sense to me, Well, why all of a sudden now, because you change the order, you get a little more sore well
before often because when overhead press comes at the end of the exercise, every time the overhead press is coping with a full body fatigue, that it doesn't have, if you started with it, when an exercise becomes stale, or what they call a plateau, you give it priority. Sometimes priority means you leave it out. Sometimes the priority means change the change the order you change what came before it,
and that causes the soreness. But why?
Well, well, it can. So it's sometimes it also depends on the exercise that came before it.
Right? That makes sense. But it surprises me that that's all you need to do to make it No,
it's not all you need to do. There inroad techniques that you can use. Changing the order doesn't always mean taking something from the end and putting at the beginning. Sometimes changing the order means instead of training your triceps right after chest, put the triceps right before the chest and then deny the chest. Any help from the triceps. Sometimes that's the inroad technique that you have to do. And I use that fairly often. Triceps up front, when you deny
leg extension before leg press, which is usually done the other way around. Have you don't like that? You're shaking your head.
Well see, this
is what my
in my in my opinion, I have never had and I don't do this I do I do knee extension or leg press? I don't do them both.
What if you're trying to get the quad sore? Well, and they're not getting sore just from the leg press?
Well, they're still techniques that you can use. You can use their butt. Well, just to get them sore. Oh, yeah, that that that will do it. That will do it. But that may not the point. I mean that might cater? Well, it might also be
I mean, let me back up for a second, just to make sure we understand the premise here. In your opinion, you need to have some degree of soreness after each workout to know that your workout is being
effective. Well, yes, to some degree, I think you need to have some soreness, I think it's an indication of a switch. I think if you don't have the muscle soreness, you may be exercising too often.
So then I say to you, okay, great, then let's every once in a while, why don't we do like extension, or I know you're correcting already in your brain knee extension, excuse me. Let's do knee extension before we go into leg press. And you say to me, Oh, I'm like, wait a second, you just told me that change things up to make it sore? Now you're saying you know, I really find that idea?
Well, you can make the knee extension harder, you can make the leg press harder, and you can change their order altogether. So depending on what comes before it, but there, there's still other,
why don't you like doing the extension before before leg press? What's your problem with it? Well, I
think it's a lot to recover from. And I probably have a biased in favor of my own experience. I don't I can't recover from both. I can't recover from doing chest and shoulders in the same session. I so I don't do that. But I was thinking in a different direction with knee extension and leg press. And the reason I'm thinking in a different direction is because I've done it tons. I've done it a lot, you know, especially early on, I don't do it anymore. But I've never noticed whether I do knee extension first or leg press first. I have never noticed any change in the strength of either one. Neither one to me fatigues the other. So if I can get 300 pounds on knee extension fresh, I can do that same 300 pounds after doing leg press to failure I've never noticed one affecting the other to weaken the other to any great degree. So I'm thinking in terms of inroads, so you know, from the standpoint of producing soreness, yeah, you will produce soreness by doing that. And maybe it represents overwork. I mean, maybe it didn't for me when I was in my 20s and 30s. But now it's different and I don't do that much on the thighs. It's It's one or the other.
So soreness is good, but not too much soreness.
I think that that's fair. And we're training the body all at once, and we're resting the body all at once. Once the the onus of change is in resting the body all at once.
I have another question, Robert. Why is this? This has been bothering me for a long time? How come? It seems anyway, you might have an answer for this. You always, usually do. But it seems to me that certain muscles get more sore than other muscles. Let me give an example. I think that the inner thighs get really sore. The calves get really sore. The hamstrings, get really sore. Triceps get really sore on the other side of the coin. Quads tough to get sore, lats tough to get so they get so don't get me wrong, they get sore, but not to the degree as those other muscles do when you work them out, biceps tough to get sore. Do you have any idea why some muscles get more sore than other muscles? Or am I just imagining that? Or is it because I don't know. I mean, to me, it doesn't make sense because I work out hard. And I work out consistently hard. Not just from workout to workout. But I work out consistently hard from exercise to exercise. I don't hold back on my chest press or my bicep curl and go all out on my calf raise or you know, I mean? So why would if I'm working out at the same level of intensity for each of my muscle groups for each of my workouts? Why do some muscles get more sore than other? Well, that
that's one of the enigmas. I almost can't get my shoulders sore. I can always get my trapezius sore. A lot of things get my trapezius sore.
Yeah, sleeping gets my trapezius. Yeah, and
but my deltoids by themselves, very rare, very rare. My sore in the deltoids almost everything else I have. So why can get really sore? There are some people. And there's some people who get very, very little soreness and you can beat on them. And you can Yes, the other thing, but they're getting stronger and and they do it may be what you can perceive. It may be something so individual. But you know these are these are the enigmas. And that's why there are so many theories. And you know, years ago, it used to be the science, you know, science was all all a Twitter when they discovered, you know, lactic acid and lactic acid became the answer to almost everything in muscle physiology. And as we learned now, as we know now lactic acid has really very little to do with a lot of the phenomenon that happens in the muscle from the including muscle soreness, including muscle soreness,
so it's not lactic acid. And then notice our study I love when massage therapists say they have to massage out to lactic acid. That's what that's what massage does. Well, there
is some time well, you want to talk about enigmas. Massage is something that obeys no biological principles. And it obviously works. It obviously changes things, it obviously creates the organic change to the body. And nobody knows what it is used to be a blood flow is nobody, nobody is suffering from low blood flow. If you have bad blood flowing your feet if the foot dies and falls off. It's not about blood flow. It's not maybe it's I've heard people say it's about moving lymph around maybe that maybe it is I don't know. But there's scarcely any way to test it. I wouldn't know what instrument to use to test it. I mean, you know, a toaster who who knows what you would have to use to test these things. But that's another enigma.
Alright. So with all these enigmas, with all these unknowns, and how are you so sure are confident that we need to get sore from workout to workout to some degree and why do you tell the client that you can't get sore yet they're getting stronger doesn't. I mean, like Richard Fineman, the physicist said, if there's an exception in science, if there's an exception to the rule, the rule is wrong. So your rule is soreness is important for progression, yet there are people that get stronger and progress without soreness.
Well, there was somebody else I knew who used to say the exception proves the rule
proves the rule. And so how does how does somebody who doesn't get sorry, yet progresses prove the rule that soreness is important?
Well, if we're talking about a maximal exercise effect from a minimal amount of stimulation, I think that muscle soreness is a good indicator,
but not the only one. It's a indicator, so you'd call it a marker. It's kind of like the marker of, I don't know, high cholesterol, but there are no other markers. So high cholesterol can be a marker for heart disease, but doesn't necessarily have to be one as an analogy, so you said fair soreness is a marker for progression and in necessary for progression but not necessarily The only marker. That's fair. So what do you say to your client that's not getting sore? Because I get that I, you know, I get there all time. You know what I say? Well, Sorensen Enigma, and, you know, as long as you're progressing, you know, you're one of those people that don't get sore. But should I always be trying to get them sore by, you know, you made me think about changing workout, just to get somebody sorry, well thought of that before? Well, when I say change, and workout, just, you know, not going crazy and doing all these crazy, you know, plyometrics circus tricks to get people sore? Well, that'll
get you sore. from a different standpoint, that's macro trauma. Okay, it manifests itself, it also includes micro trauma, what I'm talking about is, but what we do doesn't produce generally a great deal of soreness. It's not like negative training, which is safe when it's done well. But it's not, it's not usually done safely. What we do doesn't produce enormous muscle soreness, mainly because there isn't any impact. There is very little artifact from acceleration. And there are no sudden stops and no sudden starts. And so you eliminate a lot of the sources of matter, macro trauma. And that's not good. Macro trauma is not, but you're going to have micro trauma from sliding filaments against one another with very hard contractions. Now, how hard do people contract their muscles, we've got a knee extension inside that as a full range knee extension, most knee extensions aren't. Nearly every single person I put in that machine who's got experience here does not extend the knee completely. That machine is made to be used for a full range, right up to zero degrees, it's 126 degrees range. It's made to go from whatever the stretch is. And most people can make 126 degrees. Almost everybody can make 110. And it's made to be used to be pulled into zero degrees. That's what the knee locked and straightened against a perpendicular resistance. And what's the point? The point is that are people really contracting their muscles adequately. It's the intensity of muscular contraction that causes the micro trauma.
So for the clients that aren't getting to full extension, you're saying lower the weight and get into full extension. So even lower weight, but full extension is you'll probably get sore versus not going into full contraction. Yeah, well, you say yeah,
and other knee extensions that haven't been modified the way hours is modified, it is impossible to get into that fully contracted position. Now on
our machines, aren't the extension machines thing with that for a second? I might be digressing a little bit. But so what are our machines get lighter at the top. So the strength curve, though some of them do, I always do the informed fitness, our knee extension machines get lighter as you go into full extension. That's because the quadricep is much weaker, not full position that so therefore the machine gets lighter, and it doesn't put any strain on the joint when you get into that position. So we have a special machine that allows us to do that. Some people can't get into that full position, regardless of the fact that it gets lighter. You're saying let's Let's lighten a weight, get him into a full extended position, because that's what's gonna lead to the soreness because now you're getting the muscle into full contraction. But there are some people that feel that it's not good for the need, go into that full extension and try to avoid it. Even with the fall off, weight fall off resistance fall off as you get to the top end of the extension. So what would you say the people that worry about going into full extension,
they're wrong about it, and they're ignorant about exercise they're ignorant about, about the mechanics. They're ignorant, in part because they don't know any other engineering. They only they've only seen or they only know or they only build the machines that are dangerous in that position. But that's not what we have here. We have a machine that tracks the muscle and joint function. Okay, so if the knee can straighten, it's made to straighten. And if it straightens because the muscles are fully contracted, or are at their fullest point of contraction, they can be loaded in that position. Now they can't be loaded with a 100 pounds that you start with. But it can take the seven where the resistance falls away. But the thing is that most equipment manufacturers don't make any distinction between weight and resistance. They know wait. They don't understand resistance.
Yes, resistance is a function of weight. So when you're lifting a weight, the weight changes through the range of motion because of levers and army conics. So is that what you're referring to?
That's that's part of it. What's the other part? Well, the other part is the physiology. If the engineering is in accordance with the function of the muscles, and the function of the joints, the joints to rather than trying to make the muscle and joint system, match a machine that was manufactured, maybe haphazardly or maybe with other intentions,
yeah, machines get a bad rap for a good reason. And some, unfortunately, we get lumped into that same category, because we have machines, but our machines have been altered to change those problems of commercial equipment. Oh, that'll
that'll, that'll be another podcast. Man, we
can do another podcast on that. All right, getting back to soreness. So full contraction of the muscle. So getting back to this knee extension, that we assume has the right strength curves in our place anyway, if somebody can't get into full extension, lower the weight, allowing them going into full extension, and that is what is more important.
Sometimes it's lowering the weight. And sometimes it's proper teaching. Sometimes it has to do with having the person learn the exercise, most people don't learn the exercise correctly, there are handles on that machine that have to be used. If you don't use those handles what will happen out of the 72 degrees range, you've got a perfect fulcrum where the leg becomes a lever, the leg becomes a seesaw. And the resistance on the ankle starts picking the hip up. If you don't pull your hips down into the seat, and this is where the trainee has to be a part of it has to be a part of the whole system. If that hip comes up, the knees never going to extend, it'll never straighten it will never ever straighten. Because that resistance is going to be forever picking the hip up, preventing the knee from extending, the hips have to be fixed, the handles have to be taught to the trainee how to use the handles to pull the hips down into the seat. The seat belt barely helps pass the second repetition. First two repetitions shouldn't complete either, because you won't get very much fatigue at all, if you if you complete the first two repetitions because it gets so light at the top. Well, because it falls away by the third repetition that ought to be your first full range repetition because what you've got is you've got adequate fatigue for the strength curve in the machine to match the strength curve of the muscles that have been pre fatigued through the shorter ranges.
Okay, so we're getting into weeds about all this cool equipment. But well, we
know we could do two of these just on knee extension. Yeah. But
again, I want to stay to the point which is part of getting sore. If you're not finding yourself getting sore, one of the reasons you might not be getting sore is because you're not going into full range exercise, you're not doing the full answer, they may
not be going may or may not be achieving full rein and there there may be some there may be more than one or two reasons for that. But people get sore through partial range exercise. Also, you know, we were using the quadriceps as an example. But you know, all of those things are specific to quadriceps.
I have another question. Now, Rob. I know muscle soreness is important. It's a great indicator of progression and exercise and adequate workout. Should you be trying to relieve yourself of that soreness and if you feel it's okay to relieve yourself of that soreness, how would you go about doing it? But first? It can you relieve yourself of that soreness.
All right. No, it's not important or essential to reduce the muscle soreness just let it run its course but certain things can mitigate and make it not so intense one that's real important is sleep that you enter your exercise session. Well rested eight to 10 hours a day. Go to sleep long before midnight, every minute you sleep before midnight is worth about three minutes of sleep after midnight. So well rested entering the exercise session and well rested the night after the exercise session which is not usually so much of a problem. The other one is hydration when I have somebody a new trainee one of the things I tell them before they're in the 24 hours before they come in to drink a gallon of water. I usually say I have I have a weird request for you could you drink a gallon of ice cold water if you can in the 24 hours before we meet and they say oh I can't drink that much water so try to come close just drink a lot of water before exercise and after exercise a large amount of water and plenty of water in between. I just never stopped anybody from drinking water in between sometimes job to get people to drink water. Another thing that seems to be helpful to some degree a small degree for at least a few hours are contrast baths. If you turn the shower on at first Hadas, you can stand it for as long as you can stand it on your muscles, and then switch over to three minutes, maybe you could stand, then switch over to as cold as you can stand it for another two, three minutes, and then go back to the hot. The contrast tends to move hydration and nutrition into and out of the muscles and tends to help to reduce the inflammation because a great deal of the muscle soreness is inflammatory, it's an inflammatory response. And also because of the hot and the cold, you've got a constriction and expansion of the blood vessels. And the other thing is to be well nourished. Nutrition is of course, a large part of muscle repair. In the later days after exercise, you know, once the muscle soreness is mitigated, really the principal repair job is is nutrition.
Fantastic. That's good advice. You know, I don't know if I ever followed any of that. Well, I'm always hydrated. And I tend to get pretty good sleep. I never thought about the contrast baths to get rid of soreness. I mean, I kind of like being sore anyway. So you never know we all love it. I never thought about oh, we all love it and live for it. What about coaches and trainers who say that you have to change your routine. Often, in order to achieve soreness,
they're making mistake of the motor learning Mirage, there have to be 100 triceps exercises. If you keep changing it every single time you never you'll remain stale. You may get sore, you may have some soreness, but what ends up happening is all you're doing is you're learning a new exercise every single time. And so all of the responses are just just like a first
a good thing, though. I mean, you're getting sore. Is that the bottom line? I mean, if you're getting sore, you're getting r&g Insurance ensure that
you're getting stronger. These are the enigmas that we live with.
So you don't know. So maybe, maybe they're right, maybe we should be mixing it up so much, even if it's because of motor learning, as long as we're getting sore.
Well, I don't know.
I mean, maybe we should be changing the workout a lot and doing all kinds of different workouts. Well, you know, philosophy is not to do that. Ken Hutchins wrote a whole chapter on it on the non variation of exercise, the importance of not
a lot of the a lot of people have Arthur and and Joe Molen, and l Darden, but it may come about as an adequately different stimulus when you prioritize exercises, and rather than allow things to to remain in the same order.
I mean, I tend, I tend to think of the like you said, there are a lot of exercises for triceps. Some are less efficient than others, and some are more have more strain on the elbows and shoulders and others. So I just avoid those and stick with the ones that pick biomechanically, you know, safer for the joint.
Well, that's the reason why we use the exercises that we use, because even though there are hundreds of exercises for the triceps, there's only going to be two or three really, really good ones that fulfill the job without without either causing harm, or to the joint. Yeah, you got muscles and joints, things under strain or cause a problem elsewhere. And so that's why we have used or we we've been using, what is the very best exercise to get the job done? Why Why bother with something that may not be as efficient as the leg press that we choose to use or as efficient as the the chest press that we choose to use? What Why Why use one that is a completely different kind of a movement. It'll it may make you sore, but it could also end you could also get injured?
Well, that's that's for me. That's a determinant. I mean, that's why I'm not trying to vary an exercise a million different ways, because a lot of them are just not very biomechanically safe.
I've used the the calf press on the multi exerciser. Pretty much my whole life. I can remember a handful of times that I wasn't sore and my calf
and well that's what I was saying about calf muscles. I always get sore during that and
I can remember a day in the in the 11th grade when I couldn't walk up the stairs in school. And I got in a lot of trouble because I missed a couple of classes because I couldn't get myself up. I'd never had soreness like that again. That's funny,
I just tried have a dream like that once in a while I have a recurring dream, where I where I can't walk. It's really funny, you should say that you just made me think of that dream. Or we got to wrap this up because again, we can talk all day and we will we're going to do some more episodes. Alright, so what about massage and stretching, and the vibration technology out there, as many physical therapists recommend to help reduce muscle soreness.
All three of those things, reduce muscle soreness for five or 10 minutes, they're very, very, it's very temporary relief. Within within 510 minutes, you're just as achy as you were before you engage in the massage vibration. So it's just temporary. So very, very temporary, moment momentary.
So it says billable hours then in other words, it's just that's why they do it. billable hours.
I've heard that term.
Alright, there you have it, folks, muscle soreness, all the weird things about it. All the enigmas mystery about it. I'm not sure what we did today kind of clears up any of those mysteries, but, but at least we brought them to light, I tend to agree overall, I tend to agree that you should feel your work out, you know, a couple of days later, you should feel like you did something, which is the bottom line doesn't have to be debilitating crazy soreness, where you can't walk up a flight of stairs like Robert just mentioned, you should feel like you worked out. You know, maybe when you get out of a chair you're feeling and your hamstrings, your glutes. Or when you're reaching up above your head and you're pulling something down, you feel it for a second, like, Oh, look at that, yeah, I feel that. Those have to be crazy soreness. But if you're not really feeling your workout and some type of soreness, think about your routine. Talk to us. Ask us train with us. And we'll work we'll work with you to try to see if we can play around with the routines to get you to that level. Robert, thank you very much for spending the time with me.
Oh, please, what a thank you for having me.
Okay. And before I forget, it can be very useful to call us up and do even a virtual workout with us, even though you're maybe in Australia, or wherever you are in the world. As long as you speak English. I can help you we can help you. And again, you know, lots of times you talk about the biomechanics and doing exercise correctly, what Robert and I were talking about with a knee extension and might some of this might have gone over your head because it gets a little technical and we didn't get into it specifically. But these things matter. So keep that in mind. As you work out to give us a call, even if it's one or two routines, doesn't have to be a regular thing. You can get a lot out of just even working with working with us a couple of times given whatever machines or tools you have available to you. Alright, thanks a lot for listening and we'll see you next time. You go in for fitness.com Get all the details. We have an email address. It's a podcast at informed fitness.com Thanks for listening.
This has been the Inform Fitness podcast with Adam Zickerman. for over 20 years informed fitness has been providing clients of all ages with customized personal training designed to build strength fast. Visit Inform fitness.com for testimonials, blogs and videos on the three pillars, exercise, nutrition and recovery
- 1 -
00Transcribed by https://otter.ai