How To Prevent Muscle Fatigue From Training

Muscle fatigue from training is common among athletes who undergo long, intense sessions. Let’s see together why it happens and how to deal with it.
How to prevent training muscle fatigue

Training muscle fatigue is common among athletes, especially among those who play high intensity sports or who perform repetitive and tiring sessions. In this article, we talk about muscle fatigue: why it happens and how to prevent it.

Muscle fatigue refers to the inability of one or more muscles to perform an activity. In these cases, the muscle cells become exhausted and can no longer respond to the body’s orders to perform an action.

In general, this is not about permanent damage or injury. Fatigue manifests itself by limiting functional capacity for a certain period, as it leaves the muscles without strength and power.

Although it can occur for reasons other than sports, training muscle fatigue is typical of those who train constantly. Fortunately, there are action protocols for athletes that recognize the symptoms of fatigue, so they can continue training, but at a different pace.

The chemical causes of training muscle fatigue are all linked to external causes. In addition to exercise, other risk factors are an inadequate diet, dehydration, not stretching and poor or poor sleep.

Chemical causes of muscle fatigue

Lactic acid is the main culprit of muscle fatigue. Scientific studies have shown that reducing the pH inside the muscle transforms lactate into lactic acid, which affects its functionality.

The mechanism of muscle contraction, essential for exercise, has two components: the nervous system and muscle fibers. The former sends the orders corresponding to the latter to perform a certain action.

Woman feeling tired during sports.

When the contraction is repeated intensely, changes occur within the muscle cells, including a decrease in pH. PH is used to measure the degree of acidity of a substance. The lower the pH, the higher the acidity recorded.

In the face of intense and repeated muscle contractions, the pH decreases. We can go from a pH with a “neutral” number 7 at the beginning of the exercise to a pH of 6.2 at the end. This means that the insides of the muscles become acidic.

Along with acidification , intense exercise increases the amount of inorganic phosphate and lowers calcium levels. In acidic environments, the muscle cell fails and cannot contract without calcium.

That’s where training muscle fatigue comes from. In short, muscle fibers stop responding because they are not in the ideal chemical conditions to perform a contraction.

How to avoid muscle fatigue

To prevent muscle fatigue, it is essential to adopt a series of measures that counteract the lack of strength and power of the muscle. However, once a case of muscle fatigue is diagnosed, it is difficult to achieve immediate recovery, but loss of function, pain and cramps can be reduced.

Among the most useful measures we can take are:

  • Baths in cold water : if possible, tired muscles should be immersed in very cold water. Some recommend alternating hot water with cold water baths to stimulate the contraction-relaxation processes.
  • Rest : Rest is essential to heal from muscle fatigue. In fact, forcing the muscle is counterproductive and could even cause injury. Rest periods are also important to avoid the consequences of overtraining.
  • Massages : massages on the affected muscles are very useful: the fibers relax and deflate.
Leg massages.
  • Carbohydrate Diet : Muscle consumes sugar to perform exercise, which provides immediate energy. In the face of intense exercises, they are the source of contractile force. Muscle fatigue occurs because sugar deposits are lacking, so it is recommended to consume carbohydrate-rich foods after exercise.

Diet for training: a fundamental factor

The athlete’s diet is essential to prevent muscle fatigue. In fact, the muscles contract thanks to the substances we eat and muscle fatigue is closely linked to bad eating habits.

Both during the post-exercise phase and as a preventative measure, taking certain nutrients helps prevent pain and fatigue. The priority will be proteins, carbohydrates, omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids and magnesium.

As for fruit, bananas and citrus fruits are the most recommended. Dried fruits and nuts are also capable of providing large amounts of energy and nutrients.

Finally, carbohydrates, as we have already explained, are the ideal energy supplement to replenish the glucose deposits that promote contraction. In any case, in case of doubts, the ideal is to consult a nutritionist who can recommend a personalized diet based on the type of training.

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