Growing up, I'd like to think I've been an active person 🏉🤿🥊🥋. These sports required forms of conditioning to stay fit, and recovery strategies to be ready to train again the next day.
When I was younger, recovery wasn't such a big deal because I’d recover just like that. And so, didn’t pay too much attention to it🤷♂.
But as I got older, recovery got slower and injuries I didn’t properly take care of in the past start to pile up. (A not-so-fun fact: our bodies start to lose their muscle mass and function around our 30s 🙈)
Through years of studies and experimenting different techniques, I’ve reached the conclusion that I need to practice recovery strategies into my lifestyle. Why? Because I want to be staying fit and active for a long time
These are the ones that I’ve found most helpful
Nutrition 😋🍗🍠🥑🥦🥬🍌 This includes pre- and post-training. For an endurance athlete, it includes during training as well. Not only does food fuel your body to perform, it also helps it rebuild and/or grow. The tricky part about this is that different food groups have different purposes and effects on the body. For example, consuming fat-dense food before a workout will hinder your performance because fats is slower to digest. So, it’s best to have a carb before a workout. 🍌🍚🍞 Then post-workout, a protein- AND carb-combo snack will maximise your recovery and get you ready for the next training.🍗🥯🍱🍛🍣
Post-training recovery One of the most overlooked crucial points is what to do post-recovery. This includes post-recovery nutrition and other routines such as foam rolling, stretching, and/or hot and cold showers🚿. These are just a few of the ways I’ve found to help speed up my recovery. To summarise, foam rolling helps release the knots that are in your body after repeated stress and movement. Stretching allows for tight muscles and fascia to lengthen giving you back your range of motion. Hot and cold showers increase the blood flow to targeted areas in your body. More blood flow, more nutrients are directed there, aiding recovery.
Rest and sleep😴 Sometimes, our body just needs to rest, especially after an injury. Pushing it will just cause further inflammation and slow down recovery. Of course, when you’re not injured, it’s still wise to take some time off every now and then. Doing so gives your body some well-deserved time to repair itself and get you ready for the next round. If you’re someone who tends to be active, getting more sleep might also do you some good. While there’s no set number of how much time we need to sleep, research suggests 7-9 hours each night is a good place to start. If you’re generally on the more active side, aim closer to 9 hours.
There are plenty more strategies out there you could implement.
If these don’t sound like strategies you could do, comment below with 🤔 and let’s find out what strategies could!