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I've been working out for about two and a half years and have been mostly using Fitness Blender (which is wonderful). I had reached the point where I could comfortably do one of their 40 minute level 5 workouts for five days a week (upper body, lower body, kickboxing + abs), then one of the 1,000 calorie workouts one day, and then a rest day. I was on this routine for about two months.

But now for the past three weeks my legs have been sore and achy, to the point where I can't do jumping jacks for more than twenty seconds because the pain is too much. It was worse in the first week. I have tried toning it down and took three days off at a stretch once, doing only a brief warm up every day. Otherwise I've gone down to 300-400 calorie workouts (instead of the 500+ I normally did) and have tried taking an additional rest day in a week. Hasn't improved. I went to a doctor as well, who did a series of blood tests, said he thinks nothing serious is wrong and prescribed painkillers and a multivitamin.

I think I match some of the features of overtraining (unusual pain, low rate of improvement, excess fatigue, am going through a lot of personal stress) but not others (not much irritability or reluctance to exercise - in fact I want to).

I am reluctant to simply stop working out. So my question is, should I simply leave off lower body and do upper body and core for a week or two? Might that resolve the issue? Upper body doesn't seem unusually sore. Or should I leave off training entirely for a week?

  • How much are you eating? Do you track your calories? – Gunge Mar 10 '17 at 10:58
  • No, I don't. But I did also check my diet with a dietician - it is mostly high fiber, high protein with lots of vegetables, fruits and nuts - and aside from a few additions she said it seemed v good. – ShankarG Mar 10 '17 at 11:07
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sounds like you are not unaccustomed to the exercise regime. I suppose you could try taking a break and seeing if there is an improvement. If you are still not seeing an improvement you might investigate things like intermittent claudation or venous insufficiency. This generally happens to older folks with poor veins, a test might be to see if there is a measurable benefit from wearing compression stockings. Your 20 seconds onset time is the clue here.

I'm assuming your dirty intake of sodium potassium magnesium is within bounds and that you stretch normally.

  • I do stretch, but probably not enough. I've just taken a blood test for magnesium/potassium/vitamin D, results on Tuesday. I'm only 37 so is venous insufficiency likely? – ShankarG Mar 12 '17 at 5:52
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    @ShankarG likely, no but it's possible and if the pain hits you at the same time each time then it sounds a bit like it. Ultrasound can diagnose. – james Mar 12 '17 at 6:14
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It sounds like your body is not recovering properly. You could try adding more sleep to your routine. You should definitely look at your diet too. You might be missing some macro nutrients that are key in recovery.

  • Any suggestions on what nutrients might have this effect? And in the interim should i take off completely or only leave out lower body? – ShankarG Mar 11 '17 at 2:19

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