Oh the burn!
At some point during Karen, your quads start to tingle with a certain familiar sensation that can only be described as “burning.” As you work your way toward your 150th toss of the Dynamax ball, the feeling gets worse and worse until you heave the final ball to the wall.
We all feel lactic acid building up during a workout. Or do we?
It turns out the burning sensation actually comes from the accumulation of potassium outside the cellular wall. Lactic acid, more specifically lactate, plays a role in this process, but mounting evidence suggests it’s actually a fuel rather than the substance responsible for soreness.
The following video features Brian MacKenzie of CrossFit Endurance explaining the science of soreness and performance.
Additional reading: Why You Should Sprint Train by Tony Leyland, published May 1, 2007.