Recovery 101

-Author Nicole Murphy CPT

You’ve just crushed a workout- congratulations! Time to go home and focus on other things. Fast forward a couple of days and your body still feels like a bag of rocks that are weighing everything down. Does this sound familiar? If so, then maybe it’s time to reevaluate your recovery process and ask yourself these questions.

After the last set do you rush out the door? If so, then this is the first mistake. After each training session, stretching should follow. This allows the muscles to relax and not tighten up. Tight muscle can lead to abnormal movement patterns, pain, and injury. Plan out 5-10 minutes at the end of each session, along with the same amount beforehand to do dynamic stretching and/ or mobility work. Foam rolling (aka the free massage) is also good to do pre or post workout. It promotes circulation and loosens up muscle knots.

What do you consume post-workout? Protein is the building blocks of muscle recovery. Without it the body has a very hard time repairing, therefore consuming protein is necessary. It is recommended to consume at least 1 gram of protein per kg of body weight. Carbohydrates are also just as necessary. The body uses this as an energy source, and after working out this source is depleted. Eating a snack after with both protein and carbs is ideal.

When’s the last time you had a rest day? Days off can be just as important as days you work out. Plan at least 1-2 days off to let the body rest completely and 24-48 hours between working the same body part. Exercise causes small micro tears in the muscles, and rest allows time for it to recover. Figure out a workout split that follows this proper rest recommendation.

As always, remember to workout, rest, and recover!