If you
are an athlete looking to get in peak physical condition, exercising
is only one-third of the battle. The food that you eat and how you
recover from your workouts are just as important as the hours you log
in the gym; slacking in one of these areas can really hinder your
overall progress.
In this
article, we will take a look at some of the things you can do to
speed up your muscle recovery, allowing you to feel fresher and work
harder every time you hit the gym.
Post-Workout Protein
The
recovery process begins immediately after finishing a workout;
kick-start it by drinking a protein shake as soon as you are done
exercising. Aim for at least 30 grams of protein after physical
activity – a scoop of whey powder mixed with a cup of milk contains
the perfect combination of protein and fast-acting carbohydrates to
restore your glycogen levels.
Don’t Skip The Stretching
Allot
yourself 15 minutes after each workout to stretch your muscles. By
improving circulation, stretching can speed up the delivery of
nutrients to your muscles to help them recover quicker. Using a foam
roller is also a great way to break up scar tissue and remove knots
in your muscles and fascia (connective tissue).
Get More Sleep
Multiple
studies have shown that sleep deprivation can negatively affect your
workouts and recovery. Not only does your body repair itself while
you are sleeping, but a poor night of sleep can affect your mindset
and hinder the intensity of your workouts. Aim for at least eight
hours of solid sleep every night, and take a 20-30 minute power nap
during the day if you can.
Hydrate
Faster
muscle recovery could be just a glass (or two) away if you are not
properly hydrated; dehydration can amplify muscle soreness and slow
down the body’s ability to repair itself. Aim to consume 1 ounce of
water for every 2 pounds of bodyweight every day. For example,
someone who weighs 160 pounds should try to consume at least 80
ounces (10 cups) of water per day.
Active Recovery
Your
rest days don’t have to be spent on the couch. In fact, IFBB pro
Barbara Boloette says that participating in some form of “active
recovery” can alleviate soreness by stimulating blood flow and
improving circulation to the muscles. Active recovery can be going
for a light walk or bike ride, taking a yoga class, or just throwing
a frisbee around.
Looking
for a place to get some extra active recovery? Stop by Insports,
located at 29 Trefoil Drive in Trumbull, Connecticut, we are home to
the area’s largest indoor turf field and only box lacrosse arena –
not to mention multiple hardwood courts. Whether you are looking for
a full-time league or a fun night of open play, we can accommodate
for a variety of sports. Click here to visit our website or call
(203) 268-1214 for more information.