5 Ways To Improve Recovery And Soreness From Working Out
Working out is great unless you don’t recover so well that you avoid the gym the next day. You know what we’re talking about - the soreness, the achey-ness, the I-don’t-want-to-move-ness type feeling. The bad news is this - if you’re not recovering your body isn’t repairing itself from the damage you did to it during your workout. Albeit this damage is good, unless you’re not recovering, and if you’re not recovering and continuing to go back to the gym, you’re just causing unnecessary wear, tear, and eventual breakdown of your body. Yikes! Here are 5 ways to improve recovery and soreness from working out so that you don’t just crush your workout today, but all week long, too!
1. Have A Post Workout Meal
Having carbohydrates and protein, or at very least protein, after you finish working out will replenish the nutrients you used during the workout. In doing so, you can swiftly deliver the nutrients to your body to start the repair and rebuilding process. If you don’t? Your muscles crave the nutrients and will then begin to breakdown further or not repair very well, due to a lack of nutrients. This can also encourage your body to waste muscle and hold onto body fat, which ultimately can cause poor recovery, soreness, and stiffness.
RELATED: 10 Post Workout Snack Ideas
2. Hydrate Consistently
When you don’t drink an adequate amount of water (think 70-100oz per day) you feel tired, lethargic, sore, and experience brain fog. When you don’t have much energy from proper hydration and food intake you will end up craving calorically dense foods as well as sugary foods to give your body the energy spike it desires. In turn? Weight gain. That being said, not only does not hydrating consistently work against your waistline, it also works against proper recovery and reducing soreness from working out. Muscles are made up of approximately 76% muscle mass and it only takes a little bit of dehydration to see a significant loss in muscle strength and stamina. If dehydration is chronic, you’ll not only see muscle loss and poor muscle recovery but you may see the effects in your kidney function and overall health, too.
3. Make Time For Mobility
Ya, we get it, stretching and sitting there while stretching isn’t the most enjoyable thing to do. However, by making time for mobility, warming up, and cooling down both pre and post workout, your body will not only hurt less but it will actually give you more bang for your buck when it comes to your overall performance. When blood flow is getting to the right places when you need it most and your muscles are able to contract and relax when you tell them to more efficiently, you’re going to build better quality muscle, increase endurance capacity, and also be able to burn more calories during your workout.
Not to mention you’re also going to be able to recover better, meaning less soreness, achey-ness, and better quality recovery from working out. So instead of just hammering your body cold workout after workout, warm up the muscle group or part of your body that you’re going to use that day before and after, maybe 5-10 minutes worth.
4. Have A Quality Sleep Routine
One of the biggest components of proper muscle recovery and workout recovery for your body is getting sleep. However, not just getting sleep, but getting quality sleep for 6.5 - 9 hours. Typically anything less than this isn’t an adequate amount of time for your body to reach the various depths and levels of sleep in order to properly recover. When you don’t sleep well, sleep long enough, or sleep with enough quality, you’re going to feel it. Things like muscle soreness, grogginess, a lack of mental focus and clarity, lack of muscle gain or repair, increased fatigue and poor performance overall. Not to mention not getting enough sleep can contribute to unintentional weight gain or hitting a weight loss plateau, which is definitely not what you want to happen if weight loss or fat loss is your goal.
A lack of sleep can also reduce hormone function, specifically with testosterone and growth hormones that create an optimally anabolic environment for your muscle protein synthesis and health, in both men AND women. In short, we recommend establishing a quality sleep routine and sticking to it. Think along the lines of going to bed and waking up at the same time, putting down the phone or turning off the TV 30 minutes before you go to bed, brushing your teeth and having proper hygiene. You may also want to not drink liquids 1-2 hours before bed so that you don’t wakeup and pee all night. If you have trouble sleeping you may want to try a sleep supplement that has ingredients like zinc, magnesium, and vitamin B6 for increased sleep quality as well as ingredients like rhodiola and tongkat ali for optimal testosterone production at rest.
RECOMMENDED PRODUCT: ZzzMT (30 servings) by Swolverine
5. Supplement With L-Glutamine
Once you nail down your food and water intake, as well as your sleep routine, then you may want to consider adding in L-Glutamine as part of your supplement routine. Why? Not only is this product unflavored and contains a 100 servings which will last you 3-4 months (yes, months!), L-Glutamine is the most abundant conditionally essential amino acid in the entire human body (woah!). When we constantly use our bodies, workout, and demand performance from them, placing the body under stress, we often do not produce enough of this amino acid on our own, which is where supplementation comes into play.
Not only will the powder help you get more water to your muscles, stimulating muscle protein synthesis, growth, and recovery, but it will also reduce post-workout soreness and delayed onset muscle soreness (that type of soreness that comes on a few days after you workout). Not to mention L-Glutamine is the most preferred amino acid for repairing the gut lining. In doing so, you’ll absorb the nutrients from your food better, increasing effects of reduced inflammation, improved digestion, and more.
RECOMMENDED USE: You can add 5g of unflavored Glutamine to your shakes, pre, or post-workout recovery drinks for faster recovery times, and decreased muscle soreness.
RECOMMENDED PRODUCT: L-Glutamine (100 Servings, Unflavored)
How To Improve Recovery And Soreness: In Conclusion
All in all, the best way to deliver the best muscle recovery and to reduce soreness from working out is to incorporate a post workout meal that has both carbohydrates and protein, to hydrate adequately and often throughout the day (no chugging a gallon all at once), establishing proper sleep hygiene and sleep routine, as well as considering other factors like dedicating time to your mobility/stretching and supplements.
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