hypertrophy – BoomerMuscle

Tag Archives for " hypertrophy "

Is it Ok to Work Out with Sore Muscles

muscle sore

Is it ok to work out with sore muscles? YES! In fact, a certain type of soreness should be your goal as you’re trying to build muscle.

It’s important to know the difference between Pain and Soreness.

Pain is bad, Soreness is good.

It’s a signal from your body that there is a real problem. If you feel genuine pain, you should immediately stop and tend to it.

Soreness is different. I like to think of it as a “pumped up” feeling in your muscles. It’s a signal that the process of hypertrophy is taking place. Blood is rushing into your muscle to flush out waste and bring nutrients to repair the microscopic damage your training has done to the target muscle fibers.

That’s what you’re to training to accomplish, and the pumped feeling is a sign that it is happening.

If you’re just starting out to build muscle, this sore feeling may be new to you. You may mistake it for pain. So how do you tell the difference? Tough question to explain if you’ve never felt the soreness pump before. 


Pain causes a sharp sensation in your joints or muscles. It makes movement difficult. This could be due to an actual strain in the muscle. This could limit your ability to move and send a sharp pain signal when you try.

Muscle strains generally heal themselves, but should not be aggravated by more training. If the sensation lasts more than a couple days and continues to cause you great discomfort, it might be time to see a doctor, physical therapist or chiropractor. That sounds like Pain.


Soreness is more of a dull, swollen sensation in your targeted muscles. It can happen the same day as the workout, or even a day or two later. You’re feeling the ‘burn’ as lactic acid builds up in your muscle due to taking it to failure against resistance. You will see it referred to as Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness, or DOMS.

No Pain, No Gain?

In the old days of bodybuilding, Arnold Schwarzenegger was famous for saying “No Pain, No Gain.” Taken literally, that statement is just flat out wrong. No Pain Ever is our motto.

But to be fair to Arnold, what he was trying to say is that muscle growth doesn’t happen without Hypertrophy. And that’s the process of causing microscopic damage to targeted muscle fibers so that the body’s natural healing process builds them back again just a bit stronger than before.

That’s a mouthful. And it doesn’t rhyme like ‘no pain, no gain.’ But I believe that is what he actually meant to convey.

If you’ve trained before or are currently, you probably know how to tell the difference. It’s going to be more difficult if you’re new to putting your muscles to work. But don’t let soreness deter you. 

The best medicine for genuine soreness is to keep staying active and doing your workouts.

Learn to associate that feeling as the “pump” you’re aiming to create and recognize it as a sign you’re efforts are paying off.

For more perspective, check one of my favorite resources, Web MD.

And for more of my take on the Muscle Pump, check this out.

Ever been sore after a workout? What are your thoughts on Pain vs the Pump? Please share below or drop me a line at: Brian@BoomerMuscle.com

Click here and get the 5 Keys to Feeling Stronger — Right Away! Supercharge your workouts. Subscribe now and get the 5 Keys — totally free, no hassles.

Muscle Pump Workouts

The legendary “Pump.” That amazing feeling in your muscles as blood rushes in and tells you its growing. Muscle pump workouts are the key to growing new muscle.

I’ll reveal the secrets to how you do it in a moment.

We are going to pump you up

First let’s set the stage. Arnold Schwarzenegger first popularized the “Pump” back in the 1970’s by saying it was the greatest feeling you could have in a gym (and comparing it to orgasm).

Later Hanz & Franz on Saturday Night Live would parody Arnold with their “We are going to pump you up!” catchphrase and skits.

So the idea of the Pump has been around for some time. Bodybuilders have sworn by it for decades as a sign that hypertrophy (muscle building) is taking place.

A couple of years ago, some intriguing initial research was published in the Strength and Conditioning Journal that was co-authored by Brad Schoenfeld, Ph.D, C.S.C.S. He is a well-known fitness expert and owner of the website Lookgreatnaked.com.

The research studied 64 people, both men and women over a 16 week period. Basically, it found that resistance training does indeed cause a “pump” that is tied to hypertrophy, or the muscle building process.

The blood flowing to the muscle being worked is bringing oxygen and nutrients to help repair the microscopic damage that the training has caused. It is also flushing out waste products in lactic acid and carbon dioxide.

The Secret: Muscle Pump Workouts

The method of training used in the study is similar to what we promote here on BoomerMuscle.com. Using lighter weights and working to muscle failure in each set, with repetitions in the 8 – 12 range.

Subjects did 3 sets of each exercise with 60 – 90 seconds of reset between sets. They used a combination of weights, cables and machines.

What equipment you use is not really important, as long as you are creating resistance that brings your muscles to failure in that 8 – 12 rep range. Resistance Bands are just as good as barbells.

Isolation exercises, like bicep curls, are generally more effective than compound movements like squats at generating the pump.

Check out this post for a sample workout: Simple Workouts you can do at home. I’ve structured these workouts so that each day, you keep a fairly intense focus on specific target muscle groups.

That approach runs contrary to many of the popular fitness schemes out there today. But I do it this way for one purpose: to focus on exhausting the target muscle groups and getting to a Pump. We want to really focus on those specific muscles and feel that pump.

Give it a shot. It will pump you up!

Check out the BoomerMuscle Facebook page where I share lots of current articles on building muscle as we age.

Click here to get the 5 Keys to Feeling Stronger — Right Away! Supercharge your workouts. Subscribe now and get the 5 Keys — totally free, no hassles.