Post-workout recovery tips
Recovery after exercise is essential to muscle and tissue repair and strength building. This is even more critical after a heavy weight training session. A muscle needs anywhere from 24 to 48 hours to repair and rebuild, and working it again too soon simply leads to tissue breakdown instead of building. For weight training routines, never work the same muscles groups two days in a row.
Cooling down means “slowing down”, not stopping after your exercise session. Move around for 5-10 minutes at a low intensity.
Enables your body to recover (or heal) from just about any illness or injury and this also works after a hard workout. Resting and waiting after a hard workout allows the repair and recovery process to happen at a natural pace. It’s not the only thing you can or should do to promote recovery, but sometimes doing nothing is the easiest thing to do.
If you’ve exercised for under an hour, water is the essential fluid your body needs. If you’ve completed a marathon or a long cardio session over an hour you may want to use an electrolyte drink to aid in your recovery.
Ideally eat within 30-60 minutes of the end of your workout and make sure you include some high-quality protein, moderate fat and complex carbohydrate.
Never stretch cold muscles. Always stretch after your workout – this is a simple and fast way to help your muscles recover.
Book in for a massage. This is a great way to improve circulation while allowing you to fully relax. Or you could try the self-massage or foam roller (your gym may have one), which is a great way to massage your legs.
The most important thing you can do for your body is to listen to it! If you are continually tired, sore or not improving on your strength or fitness gains then you may need to take a break from training for a week or so. Your body will come back with more energy and life after the rest it needs.
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