By maximizing your workout recovery you will be able to get better results no matter if that is building muscle and strength, or when losing weight.
There are many different forms that can be beneficial to help reduce soreness and the stress that the body goes through when working out.
This is often overlooked but as I always say, rest and recovery is also a part of the process.
Learn what's best for recovery after a workout, how to maximize recovery time, and tools that you can use in between workouts to make the most of the hard work that you are putting in.
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In this article, we are going to give the breakdown on why recovery is important, the different forms, and how to add it into your routine.
Why is post-workout recovery important?
What it does for your body
Rest is essential for muscle growth. When exercising it creates microscopic tears in the muscle tissue. With rest, cells called fibroblasts helps to heal in order to grow and get stronger.
How it can help improve your results
Recovery allows us to improve performance in our workouts and helps to prevent injury in future training.
It can help reduce muscle soreness and recover faster to resume training as scheduled.
What to focus on
Doing lighter activities and relaxing the muscles that you have worked in order to give your bodies nervous system time to help regenerate.
By allowing them to rest as a whole day or a form of relaxation, you will be able to get the most out of your plan that you are following which in turn means better results.
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It comes in all different forms
Workout recovery is what you can use before, during, and after exercise to help maintain a healthy lifestyle and also help to reduce risk of injury.
The different types
Your nutrition and what you eat post exercise, stretching, foam rolling, sleep, massage, and Epsom salt.
These all fit into 3 categories: during workout recovery, immediate post workout recovery, and of course recovery days.
Benefits of each
During-workout recovery is the time that you take to rest in between sets. This gives your body a chance to catch your breathe and give your muscles rest briefly, and mentally prepare for the next set.
Immediate post-workout recovery and rest days can consist of static stretching, foam rolling, using a message gun, along with eating some carbohydrates and protein within 90 minutes after exercise.
While you don't have to go out and buy a bunch of different things. You will at least want to do static stretching at the very least to help with recovery right after a workout when your muscles are warm and most apt to stretch.
Foam rolling is a form of Self-Myofascial Release (SMR) which is like giving yourself your own massage. It helps to break up inflammation in your fascia tissue. It can be used also before and during exercise.
Massage Gun helps to break up tension, increase blood flow, and speed up rehab on your muscles. Another form of a personal massager that you can use on yourself.
Eating Carbs and Protein after a workout helps to replenish your glycogen stores in the body after being depleted from your workout. Those nutrients help to repair the muscles that were being worked.
Note: Some supplements are made for this too like BCAA's and L-Glutamine. However, those are great to supplement when you have added everything else in. Taking the supplements alone don't help release the tension and knots that have been accumulated. It is best to use these in addition, but are not required for best results.
Making the best choice for you
While sometimes it is hard to fit all of these in depending on your schedule, it is important to do a few things each time as a form of recovery to help.
Determine what you have and are willing to spend if you don't have all of these tools available to you. Then incorporate them as needed into your fitness routine.
Adding it into your routine
Identify pain points
What are some areas that are always tight and sore for you? These are usually the points that are needing more attention in your recovery compared to something else.
Remember that everything starts from the feet up for posture and alignment.
For example: I always have tight hamstrings after working them. I use a combination of static stretching, foam rolling, and massage to help. However, later found it was my calves who were even more sore when foam rolling and pulling so my hamstrings were struggling to heal.
What can you make a habit?
It's important whatever form you pick to make a habit of it. The extra 5 minutes at the end of a workout can make the difference in how it effects your next workout.
As mentioned earlier, you don't have to do every thing unless you want to or have the time, but something is definitely better than nothing when it comes to this.
My personal favorites
Want a video on stretching and foam rolling? Stay tuned!
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By maximizing your workout recovery from your workouts, you will help your body to thank you and be able to continue pushing hard towards your goals without causing injury.
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