Soreness in the chest following your workout can develop for a variety of reasons. Among these are pushing yourself too hard during your routine, using weight that is too heavy for you, not taking proper breaks as needed or using improper form. Although soreness is uncomfortable, it is not typically life threatening and can be easily treated. However, always seek medical attention if pain lingers or you suffer from any pre-existing medical condition or injury.
Do a light 30-minute cardiovascular exercise, such as brisk walking, after your chest strength-training workout. This will improve blood flow to your entire body, including your chest. As your blood leaves the pectoral muscles, it also moves out metabolic byproducts such as lactic acid and carbon dioxide, which contribute to soreness.
Place an ice pack or a baggie full of ice on your chest for about 20 minutes. This will help reduce any inflammation and soreness in the pectoral muscles. Or, fill a bath with cold water and immerse yourself in it for a few minutes.
Take an anti-inflammatory medication such as aspirin or ibuprofen to ease soreness and inflammation in the chest. According to the Huffington Post, anti-inflammatory medications also improve the flow of blood throughout your body, which will help repair your chest muscles as well.
Lie in a bath full of water and 1/2 cup of baking soda for about 20 minutes. The alkaline mixture will help neutralize the metabolic byproducts in your muscles such as lactic acid.
- Warm up with a five-minute low-impact activity such as walking before you start your chest workout. This will increase blood flow, warm up your muscles and prepare your body for your workout.
- Although mild soreness in the chest is normal after you work out the pectoral muscles, seek immediate medical assistance if you experience nausea, tightness in your chest or pain that radiates to your jaw, left arm or shoulder. These could be signs of a more serious problem such as a heart attack.
Rose Erickson has been a professional writer since 2010. She specializes in fitness, parenting, beauty, health, nutrition and saving money, and writes for several online publications including The Krazy Coupon Lady. She is also a novelist and a mother of three.