The answer is: neither.
If you attend Semi-Private training at Paragon, you know our training blocks shift between strength, hypertrophy, and work capacity. Sometimes you’ll feel sore and sometimes you won’t. Why is this?
First and foremost, it is important to note that soreness is not a great tool to measure the effectiveness of a workout. For some people, feeling sore may be equated to having a great workout. We want to remind everyone that if you aren’t sore, it doesn’t mean you’ve had a bad workout.
Here are a few reasons you may not feel sore:
- Your body is getting used to the movements + movement patterns you are implementing! Think of how you feel at the start of a training block vs. at the end. Typically, the first week of new workouts leaves you feeling slightly sore and by the end of the block you may not feel sore at all after workouts.
- It could be genetic! People experience soreness in different ways.
Here are a few reasons you may feel sore:
- The training block changed. This means new styles of training, new movements, and different recovery times. Your body may just be adjusting!
- You aren’t well-rested, fueled, or hydrated before and after your workouts.
- You’ve pushed it too hard! We use RPE to implement intensity in your workout and it is important to follow.
- You could be new to exercising, however your body will adjust over time.
What are some better ways to measure progress and success?
As mentioned, soreness isn’t a great tool to use to measure success in the gym. Soreness doesn’t mean you had a better workout than the days you weren’t sore! While we won’t progress every single session, reflect on other variables instead of soreness. It depends on the training block, but in work capacity if you are less out of breath, feeling energized after your workout, and are able to complete extra rounds you know you’re progressing. If you’re experiencing increasing soreness throughout a work capacity block, we may need to reevaluate your recovery (sleep, nutrition, stress, rest).
If you’re feeling extra sore after a workout, be sure to continue to move your body (think going on a walk!), hydrate, stretch, and eat nutrient dense fuel. If you aren’t sore, don’t sweat it. We program your workouts to be sure they are effective! Try reflecting on the examples above to remind yourself that you are, in fact, crushing it.