Latest Articles

October 20, 2007

Fitness Q&A

By Diane Bomba

Fitness advice on muscle soreness, eating before workouts, water replacements, and foot numbness when it comes to cardio workouts.

If you have a health question, submit it to Diane at

Muscles soreness after workout

Dear Diane,

I am very familiar with the motto, “No pain, no gain.” I workout out five days a week, two hours a day, and I spend each of those days working one or two muscle groups and doing cardio.

The next day after any workout, I feel sore. Not so sore that I’m incapacitated, but sore enough to know that I got a serious workout. A friend told me that I must be doing something wrong if I feel sore. My body is showing me otherwise; I look awesome.

But is it possible that I am actually damaging my body for the long-term?


Hi Nadia,

Wow, you are one dedicated workout babe! Good for you.

If your soreness is a result of muscle pain and not joint pain, you are on the right path to a perfect body. What’s important is that you feed your muscles with the necessary sustenance (protein, healthy fats and complex carbohydrates) to help them recover, and get stronger and leaner.

Some soreness the day after a workout indicates that you are constantly building your muscles effectively. The minute you stop feeling slight soreness, it means you’ve hit a plateau and need to switch up your workout.

If you feel healthy and muscle recovery doesn’t take more than 48 hours, then I think that you shouldn’t pay any mind to your friend and keep on doing what you’re doing.


Eating before or after workout

Dear Diane,

There has been much debate about whether I should eat before and/or after a workout. I prefer to eat afterwards simply because any time I eat beforehand, I feel awful.

So once and for all, what is the right thing to do?


Hi Cathy,

Neither is wrong. It all comes down to a matter of preference. Of course, whether you eat before or after is not as important as what you eat. A balanced diet that includes complex carbohydrates, protein and good fats will help you reach and maintain your fitness goals.

Eating beforehand
If you opt to eat beforehand, however, you need to be more wary of what you munch on. For example, it’s probably best to avoid proteins coupled with high fats like meat, nuts and cheese, as those kinds of foods may leave you feeling heavy and tired.

Also, you shouldn’t eat right before a workout, but rather an hour or more before you start exercising.

Finally, stay hydrated at all times in order to keep up your energy throughout your workout.

And contrary to popular belief, it is not a good idea to work out on an empty stomach first thing in the morning because your body is already starving and will be running on fumes. You will be eating away at your muscle; not just your fat stores.

Eating afterwards
Studies show that eating 15 to 60 minutes after a workout is optimal for replacing lost glycogen and helping your body to recover. You don’t need to eat a full meal, but a combination of complex carbs and protein (i.e. an apple with a few almonds or turkey on whole wheat pita bread) are optimal for recovery.

And, again, drink plenty of water to keep your body hydrated.


Does anything replace water?

Dear Diane,

I know you’re supposed to drink eight glasses of water a day but I was wondering if drinking energy drinks or flavored water count as well.


Dear Jill,

Sorry Jill, but no, they don’t count. To start, most energy drinks and flavored waters contain a lot of sugar; avoiding them altogether is probably a good idea.

Nothing can be substituted for water so I strongly recommend that you stick to drinking it daily. The best way to get your necessary water intake is by keeping a bottle of it by your side at all times.


Feet go numb with cardio

Dear Diane,

Whenever I get past the 20-minute point when I’m doing cardio, my feet begin to go numb. What’s going on?

Please help,

Hi Jake,

Nice to see that there’s a man checking out my column!

Now, on to your question. There are a few possible reasons why your feet may go numb when you perform your cardio workout.

  • You tie your shoes too tight
  • You’re performing an exercise that presses your toes against the edges of your shoes
  • You never lift your feet off the platform

    Your feet go numb because blood is not able to circulate through them freely and quickly enough. As well, because your body require more oxygen, it’s possible that, by the time the O2 gets to your feet it’s already been depleted by your larger leg muscles.

    Nevertheless, tie your shoes a tad looser, switch up your cardio routine and lift your feet off the platform every now and again. If that doesn’t work, I recommend you visit a doctor.

    Good luck,
  • No comments:


    AddThis Social Bookmark Button
    Add to Google

    Powered by FeedBurner