With the fitness industry on the rise, we are finding more and more people becoming physically active! This is great and all, but how many of you truly understand what it means to recover after some sort of physical activity? Too often do I hear clients, trainers within corporate based gyms (EOS, LA Fitness, etc.), and even individuals who have been exercising their entire life complain about why they are not seeing proper results. After focusing on your diet and then programming, what does your recovery regimen honestly look like? Many start to ask themselves this question and realize their lack of progress, aches, and pains are all related to a similar issue, proper recovery. Recovery can happen in many different ways, and a few of these methods should be implemented daily to ensure the best results possible!
Most people already understand the whole get eight hours of sleep each night, drink plenty of water, and stretch things, but what about other recovery methods not too many of us consider?
Rest Days: Yeah, crazy right? Taking time off from exercise (more specifically, avoiding the last worked group of muscles) is one of the best ways to allow for proper muscular growth and recovery! Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) is that terrible muscular pain you get one to two days post exercise (you know, the “I can’t sit on my toilet” feeling?!). During this time, our muscle fibers are repairing from being torn down and need the proper rest if you ever want to avoid a plateau. This is where most mess up and train that same group of muscles within the DOMS period! Doing this will only prolong your results as your muscle fibers cannot repair themselves and grow if they are constantly being torn back apart!
Self-Myofascial Release (SMR): More commonly known as foam rolling, this technique is designed to reduce muscular tension as well as increase the length of the muscle for improved mobility! Foam rolling should be done pre or post workout for a minimum of ten minutes.
CBD/THC: Yes, believe it or not marijuana is becoming the next big tool for recovery! Cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are two compounds that are found within the cannabis plants. CBD is known as the cannabinoid that gives you the medical benefits of cannabis, but without actually getting the high. Known to treat people with anxiety, ADD, and muscular soreness, CBD has become very popular among many athletes around the world for post workout recovery! Now if you have your medical card or live in a state where marijuana is currently legal, you can try utilizing THC over the CBD products if you are looking for the medical benefits plus the high. Allowing our body to relax from a natural remedy will let us perform every day activities without pain or the damage to your internals from loading up on Advil!
There are many ways we can recover from exercise, but we must take the time to ensure we take care of our bodies! Find something that you enjoy doing daily so you can develop a habit of proper recovery. After all, why wouldn’t you want to recover properly if it meant progressing toward your goals faster?
Written By Jordan Leeper (@uniqueAF_chandler)
Fitness Director, Unique Performance, Chandler AZ