Sore abs are often characterized by tightness and dull pain. If your abs are sore from working out it may be difficult to stand up straight or stretch upwards due to muscle tightness. The pain may also become more intense if you make a sudden movement that activates your abdominal muscles. If you feel a sharp pain, stabbing pain, or ab pain that does not improve after more than a week, this could be the result of a serious injury. In this case, consult a doctor.
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Can Sore Abs Make Your Stomach Hurt?
Sore abdominal muscles will cause your stomach to hurt. This soreness can take the form of tightness or a dull burn. Sometimes, the sensation of sore abs feels similar to the sensation of hunger pangs. These feelings are normal after a workout.
- Sore abs can take the form of tight or aching abdominal pain.
- Sometimes, abdominal soreness can feel similar to sensations of hunger.
- The pain of sore abdominal muscles is heightened by doing exercises or movements that recruit your abs.
If you have sore abs after a workout, motions and exercises that use your ab muscles will increase the intensity of the pain. If you are lying in bed, sitting up to leave it may cause an increase in the burning feeling.
Should Your Abs Feel Sore After a Workout?
Soreness is not necessarily the benchmark of a good workout, but often you will feel soreness in your abs after a workout that includes abdominal exercises. This is due to the fact that exercising your abs puts microscopic tears in your muscles. Your muscles become inflamed and stiff as your body works to repair them. This results in soreness.
- Soreness does not always follow a good ab workout, but it is common.
- Soreness is caused by your body’s inflammation response to the microscopic muscle tears caused by exercise.
- As your body repairs this muscle damage, soreness dissipates and your muscles are built back stronger than before.
Putting small tears in your muscles by doing planks or ab wheel rollouts might seem like a bad thing, but this process is necessary for growing stronger muscles. As your body repairs this microscopic muscle damage, it builds your muscles back larger and denser than before.
How Long Should Your Abs Be Sore?
Typically, DOMS, or Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness begins the day after a workout and lasts for 2–3 days. In most cases, the soreness will diminish over this period. However, if you are new to working out your abs, have not worked them out in a while, or did an especially taxing workout the soreness can last for up to a week.
- Your abs will typically remain sore for 2–3 days after a workout.
- Intense workouts or new workouts may cause your ab soreness to linger for a week.
- Ab soreness that goes beyond a week may be a sign of more serious injury.
Sore muscles will repair themselves over time. However, more serious pain will linger beyond this point. If your abs are still painful more than a week after your workout, it could be the sign of a muscle pull or tear.
What Does Ab Pain Feel Like?
If you have severe abdominal pain, such as shooting, nagging, or sharp pain then this is probably not caused by typical muscle soreness. A sharp pain or one that restricts your movement drastically could be the sign of a pulled muscle.
Are Your Abs Sore or Did You Pull a Muscle?
The typical signs of muscle soreness are dull, burning, or aching pain that becomes more intense when you use your abs. However, a pulled muscle has different symptoms. These include:
- Sudden or sharp pain
- Tenderness to the touch
- Swelling or redness
- Muscle spasms
If you are having one or more of these symptoms, contact a doctor. Additionally, check the color of your urine. If your urine is darker than normal, including red or brown, this could be a sign of rhabdomyolysis, a type of kidney failure brought on by severe muscle injury. If you see these signs, head straight to the emergency room for treatment.
How Do You Relieve Sore Abs?
If your abs are sore for a week then it’s time to take steps for relief. However, the tenets of sore muscle relief can be applied the first day you wake up with sore abs. Some of the best methods for reducing sore abs are:
- Hydrate with plenty of water.
- Eat a high protein diet with meat, fish, nuts, and/or tofu.
- Take a BCAA supplement.
- Take hot or cold showers.
- Get plenty of rest.
- Take an NSAID such as ibuprofen.
These simple tactics will speed up your body’s recovery process and reduce the symptoms of muscle soreness right away. They’re also all scientifically-backed ways to reduce muscle soreness.
How Do You Know if You Overworked Your Abs?
If your abs are so sore the day after a workout that you can’t sit upright or stand without muscle soreness, you may have overworked your abs. Additionally, if your abs are sore for more than 3 days, it’s likely due to overwork.
- Your abs are sore for more than 2–3 days.
- Ab soreness makes everyday tasks painful.
- Prevent ab soreness by dialing back your workout next time, then slowly increase intensity.
- Follow an established workout routine with regimented sets, reps, and off days from ab exercises. This will help prevent overwork.
Prevent overworking your abs in the future by reducing exercise intensity to half of what made your abs extremely sore in the first place. Then, slowly make the exercise more intense over time. It’s a good idea to follow an established ab workout routine created by a professional. This will ensure you get the benefits of an ab workout without overworking yourself to the point of injury.