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I'm about 7 months into a renewed strength training program. I work out three times per week, or every other day, as time permits. I can provide details of the workout if necessary, but it's basically 7 primary barbell lifts 3 sets of 10 reps each, full body each workout, and the weights used are based off of squatting with my body weight on the bar. I've done some progressions with the weights, but I'll skip those details for now.

I do not get sore after my workouts. One time I tried century sets at 1/3 weights, and that did leave my legs very sore. So, I can, if I choose to, do a workout that will give me DOMS. But I don't get DOMS from my normal routine.

However, in the morning, the day after, I feel stiffness in the muscles I've worked out. I rate the stiffness as mild. It goes away after I get moving for the day, or after doing a morning stretch routine, which is my normal morning habit.

I'm 52 years old, 5'9" height and 148 pounds weight.

Should I regard this stiffness as normal, or a sign of over training?

I've been thinking of it as a sign that my work outs provide enough intensity, but because I don't feel actual soreness, I'm not overdoing it. I'm just not sure.

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  • Sounds like mild DOMS tbh.
    – Thomas Markov
    Jan 26, 2022 at 23:30
  • @ThomasMarkov, but to the point of over training? Jan 27, 2022 at 0:36
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    If it's a routine you've been on for a while, then I'd have a look and see if there's anything you can do to improve your recovery a bit as it does sound like minor DOMS. Try drinking more, eating more protein, sleeping more, going for a walk after your training session. It might be you are training more than your body's ability to recover (so yes, slight overtraining, or under recovering as I prefer to call it).
    – Dark Hippo
    Jan 27, 2022 at 7:20

1 Answer 1

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Do you notice a difference in soreness when you workout every other day or have more than one day in between workout?

The DOMS might be because you are doing a full body workout each time and are not giving certain muscles long enough to recover.

This is a good article for recovery based on effort. https://www.bodybuilding.com/content/the-science-of-muscle-recovery-how-long-should-you-rest-between-workouts.html

I would try to change up your workout just a little and focus on different muscles each workout, you could still do full body workouts (those are my favorite) but do different lifts and see if that helps prevent the soreness.

You could also try stretching before or after the workout and that might help prevent soreness the next morning.

According to this study it didn't seem to matter when the stretching was done. There was a slight benefit for stretching not much but it might help https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21735398/

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    When I have a 3 workout week, it seems to fully clear up. Recently it's been about a 2 week stretch of every other day, so maybe I should throw in a two day rest and feel things out. Jan 27, 2022 at 19:59

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