If you like to workout hard, then a speedy recovery after you exercise is going to be important to reduce muscle soreness and stay energized. Although some of may be unavoidable after an awesome workout, there are definitely some tricks you can use to reduce the pain as well as be ready to work hard during your next workout!
1. Eat the Right Foods After Your Workout
After working out hard it’s important to refuel the body. Exercise causes muscle breakdown and depletion of glycogen stores so it’s important to rebuild with protein and carbohydrates. Getting these nutrients within 30-45 minutes after your workout is ideal. For something quick on the go as you leave the gym a recovery whey protein shake with fruit may be ideal, or if you have time to cook some food or pack a lunch opt for something with lots of protein such as chicken or fish and healthy carbs such as sweet potatoes, rice, or whole grains. Just be sure to get it in before that 30-45 minute window is up!
2. Drink lots of water
For optimal recovery it’s important to stay hydrated. During exercise, especially in hot weather, you will sweat and lose a lot of water from your body, so you’ve got to replenish. So be sure you are getting lots of quality H2O during and after your workout and remember to drink before you get thirsty. And don’t just stop there! Be sure you are drinking water throughout the entire day so you stay well hydrated always.
3. Take the Right Supplements
If you are working out intensely or for long periods of time you may want to consider adding supplements into your nutrition program. Two of the basics I recommend include:
• Glutamine – Glutamine is one of the most abundant amino acids in the muscle and also is highly utilized during exercise. So for someone that exercises intensely it becomes important to replenish this amino for proper recovery and muscle re-growth.
• BCAA’s – BCAA’s help rebuild and repair the muscle after intense exercise. BCAA’s should be taken immediately before a workout for energy and after a workout for optimal recovery and muscle repair.
4. Take Your Recovery Time Seriously
It’s important to allow 48-72 hours after training a particular body part before training it again. For instance if you train arms really hard on Monday, make sure to until at least Wednesday or Thursday before hitting them hard again, especially if they are still sore. Wait until the muscle soreness goes away and this is a good sign you are ready to go.
It is also important to take days off from exercise completely to allow the body to reenergize and for the muscles to grow and repair. Training too hard to often can lead to overtraining syndrome, which could make it even more difficult for the body to recover. So take a day off from exercise at least 1-2 days per week or at least stick with something very light such as going for a walk on those off days.
5. Get Enough Sleep
Getting enough sleep is important for anyone that exercises regularly. During sleep, your body produces Growth Hormone which aids in muscle repair and growth. So be sure to aim for 7-8 hour each night, but don’t get caught up in a number because everyone is different. You should feel rested when you get up in the morning, so however many hours that is each night stick to it.
6. Listen to Your Body
It’s important to listen to your body when exercising. If you are feeling overly fatigued, sore, or even sick it may be a good idea to skip your workout that day. This is your body’s way of telling you that you may need a break, so LISTEN! Dismissing these signals can lead to fatigue, decreased energy, and injuries.
So there are your six ways to for a speedy recovery after exercise. Be sure to implement these tips into your program and you’ll notice huge differences!
What are your top tips for recovering after a workout?