Why is recovery just as important as exercise?

After a great workout, muscles are tired, contracted and fatigue is already starting. However, there are 7 steps you can do to help relieve DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) which will allow you to get off the toilet seat!

Step 1 – Cooldown

Allow the Heart Rate to drop back down to at least 60% of your maximum rate (220 – your age). You can achieve this by walking and checking your pulse periodically. This usually takes around 2- 5 mins for this to occur, depending on your fitness level.

Step 2 – Static Stretching

Once your heart rate is down, you can start static stretching. It’s good to spend 20 seconds to stretch all the tendons of the muscles you have just worked.

Step 3 – Re-Stretch

Now you will want to stretch the actual muscle to length the muscles that you have been contracting during the workout. Spend around 30 – 45 seconds on each muscle. If you can, lie down and get an assisted/pnf stretch. This will improve your flexibility.

Step 4 – Fluids

After a workout you would have lost plenty of fluids, and dehydration will already be in place before you realise. Replenish your fluids by drinking plenty of water.  You will need to approximately 1L of water after 45mins of exercise.

Step 5 – Contrast Therapy

Alternating hot and cold shower/bath provides increased muscle flow to the working muscles and speeds the removal of lactic ACID.

Step 6 – Rest

Passive resting such as reading and LISTENING to music are great ways for the body to relax, both physically and mentally. Use this time to continue to drink fluids.

Step 7 – Sleep

At the end of the day, it’s important to get a good night of sleep. Sleep is one of the most important forms of rest and provides time for the body to adapt to the physical and mental demands of training. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep (8hours per night is a good guideline)

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