By reading this article you will get the following:
- The Importance of Muscle Recovery
- 10 Simple Ways to Improve Muscle Recovery
- What Not to do When it Comes to Recovery
- Recommendations for Applying These Principles
Why should you prioritize a recovery practice for your fitness routine? The quicker and more effectively you can recover, the sooner you can train your muscles at thier peak performance levels. In addition, the older you get, the more important active recovery becomes. At a fundamental level, working hard but also smart will help you stay injury free. Find out what works for you and create a disciplined approach to recovery.
PEAK RECOVERY LEADS TO PEAK PERFORMANCE
The focus on daily recovery and mobility work becomes even more vital when you factor in time. To be able to perform at a high level you must prioritize and execute your recovery work on a consistent basis.
You are in control of your life. You choose the outcome. Choose to invest in yourself and your health.
What are the go-to “Do’s and Don’ts” ? Despite age, ability or focus, they have broad application. Put these routines to work for your training, competition, or simply the demands of everyday life. The benefits transcend athletic performance. You’ll feel and be healthier and be on the receiving end of longevity.
10 RECOVERY DO’S & DON’TS
1. Do drink one-half your body weight in ounces of water every day. We believe that prioritizing hydration is imperative for healthy, well-recovered muscles.
2. Do add electrolytes to your water. Electrolytes play an important role in how much water the muscles absorb. Without the presence of electrolytes like sodium, potassium, and magnesium, the water molecules cannot permeate the cell.
Water that’s been enhanced with electrolytes passes more efficiently into your muscles. Electrolytes help move nutrients into the cells and waste products out. The upshot is that drinking water with electrolytes helps speed recovery and restore muscle tissue.
3. Don’t skip out on sleep. Sleep is fundamental to short-term and long-term recovery success. Good sleep allows for proper hormonal regulation and both physical and psychological repair and restoration. Chronic sleep deprivation undercuts recovery and performance capacity. It also can lead to potentially serious health and wellness consequences. A common sleep pattern is to go to bed at 9 pm and wake at 6 am. Everyone is different so you should find what works best for you. Don't skimp out on a proper mattress either, you'll spend nearly 1/3 of your life in it!
4. Don’t waste time on recovery techniques that aren't proven. As in conventional physical therapy technologies lacking the support of strong scientific data. Electrical muscle stimulation, cold laser therapy, ice baths, and ultrasound: Don't bother with them until there is solid evidence to support them.
5. Do invest in your mobility. You should invest time both before and after training sessions to focus on your mobility. This helps his muscles stay long and soft while firing and executing the demanding movements required to perform. Mobile joints are also better equipped to absorb stress and are critical to managing imbalances that arise from injuries. Tense, shortened muscles make one more susceptible to injuries. Can you perform self-mobility? Yes — Kingsfield Fitness Spark Vibrating Foam Roller and the Kingsfield Fitness Massage Gun are excellent tools to use in a similar, ritualistic fashion, before and after exercise and competition. Research has demonstrated that vibration therapy can improve muscular strength, kinesthetic awareness, and blood flow.
It should be your general discipline to always bracket workouts with mobility sessions. The purpose of pre-workout mobility is to lengthen, soften and “prime” your muscles for the workout.
The post-workout mobility session alters the focus. The goal after your workout becomes to flush out lactic acid and stimulate the lymphatic system (think of the lymphatic system as the body’s internal vacuum cleaner).
This will increase the speed of recovery and transport oxygenated blood into the muscles quicker. Another focus of post-workout mobility is to support the movement learning process. This means training the brain to store what the muscles have just learned about how to stay long, soft and primed during demanding high-intensity athletic movement.
6. Do eat an anti-inflammatory diet. One reason to do this to help keep insulin levels in check. It’s been said that food is “the most powerful drug of all.” Choosing foods that lower inflammation and avoiding foods that raise inflammation can have profound effects on recovery, body composition, and overall health.
7. Don’t eat junk food. Chronic inflammation short circuits recovery and a poor diet will do exactly this. Junk foods, fast foods, processed foods that have long shelf lives: These will have a detrimental effect on inflammation, insulin levels, and body composition. Our rule of thumb is to avoid anything that comes in a box or bag. You should also avoids foods with white flour or added sugars to further reduce inflammation.
8. Do the work to keep your muscles firing at 100%. If there’s a peak performance secret to why some people can perform better than others at older age, it’s their determination to sustain an optimal state of pliable, balanced muscles. This equates to muscles that can fire at 100% capacity.
Full muscle pump function is made possible when the nervous system has learned to fire muscles while they’re long and soft rather than when dense and stiff. The opposite — doing physical work while muscles are short and dense — reduces work capacity and ups the injury risk.
Everything we do is a learned behavior. So you want to teach your muscles to do the job you want them to do while in an optimal state. This state is comprised of a natural, lengthened muscle. Training for sports, exercising, and running them will degrade this natural muscle length.
A proper recovery discipline is targeted toward restoring this muscle tissue on a daily basis.
9. Do use Kingsfield Spark Vibrating Foam Roller rather than standard foam rollers. Use the Kingsfield Spark to recover and restore pliability. The technology merges vibration therapy with rolling and activates the nervous system (helping it to learn the desired behavior). Tissue changes become possible.
As mentioned, this is similar to the deep-force muscle work receives in pliability sessions. Standard foam rollers don’t involve the nervous system and the state of the tissue is unchanged. You will activate and re-educate the nervous system when using a Kingsfield Fitness device.
10. Do travel with a Kingsfield Vibrating Massage Device. Approved by TSA, you should pack our Kingsfield Fitness vibration devices to sustain your daily recovery disciplines on the go.
The benefits of recovery can seem subtle at first. Most people won't fully register the positive effects of an anti-inflammatory diet for about two weeks. In selecting disciplines from this article and making them your own, make a commitment to using them daily for two to three weeks and pay close attention to how well they work for you. For detailed workouts and action items you can experiment with, check out our website and Youtube channel.
We'd love to hear about your results! If you have tried some of our techniques and found them beneficial, please share with us on social media.
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