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  • Writer's pictureEunan Doherty SENr

Muscle Soreness: 4 Ways to Recover Post-exercise

If you have been training hard, you may have experienced Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness otherwise known as DOMS - that muscle ache in the days after a tough workout.

Use the 4 Rs of Recovery below to improve the speed and quality of your muscle recovery.

Gym member at Pro-Fitness gym, challenged by muscle soreness


When you think of Repair, think of Protein. Eating a good source of protein after exercise increases training adaptation and improves performance in both strength and endurance training! While Protein intake immediately after a workout is important, trying to have a consistent intake of protein throughout the day will be more beneficial in the long run! Aim for 20g-25g every 3-4 hours as a start!

A few good examples of protein sources include:

  • Meat or Poultry

  • Fish

  • Eggs

  • Milk & Yoghurt

  • Beans

  • Grains

  • Nuts & Seeds


When you think of Refuel, think of Carbohydrates. Carbohydrates give our body the energy it needs to recover optimally. The time it takes to optimally refuel depends on the intensity and length of workout! Another factor is the amount and timing of carbohydrates consumed after the workout! Try to consume around 1-1.2/kg bodyweight of carbohydrate from either solid or liquid source! The more experience we get training, the more efficient our refuelling becomes!

A few good examples of carbohydrates sources include:

  • Pasta & Rice

  • Fruit & Fruit Juices

  • Potatoes

  • Oats and Grains

  • Cereals & Cereal Bars

  • Peas and Corn


Always have fluids ready for training whether it be before, during or after. Replace lost fluid during exercise by 150% within the first few hours of session ending. An easy method to measure this is the Sweat Loss Test. Weigh yourself before your session and then, in the same clothes and dried off, weigh yourself after the session. Whatever the resulting weight loss is, multiply by 1.5 and this is how much you need to rehydrate by. Make sure to account for any water consumed during the session e.g., 1kg Weight loss = 1.5L fluids needed to rehydrate!

A few examples to help with hydration:

  • Water

  • Milk

  • Sports Drinks

  • Protein Shake

  • Smoothies or Fruit Juices


Probably the easiest of the 4 R’s! Relax, take a break! Get enough sleep (around 8 hours a night) Sleep is vital for optimising recovery! Try to avoid blue lights from screens close to bedtime. Not getting enough sleep can have a negative effect on our immune system and our overall health!

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