Recovery

  • Many people do not take the time to fully recover after a strenuous workout. The recovery is almost as important as the workout itself! There is multiple ways to recover from exercise. Do at least one of these, preferably all after each workout.

    • Cool down: During a workout your body accumulates a lot of lactate from working muscles but a cool down can aid in clearing this buildup and provide relief. It also gradually reduces the heart rate and prevents muscle stiffness. Ways to cool down? Take a 10 minute brisk walk (preferably with a fur-friend), cycle, row….really any form of cardio at a lower intensity.

    • Foam Roll: In a dream world, I would have all my clients schedule regular massages to keep their muscles happy and functioning to their max. For most of us, this is unrealistic. That’s where self-myofascial release, aka foam rolling comes into play. We create microtrauma to our muscles each time we put stress on them. This can lead to the build up of fascia scar tissue and adhesions making the fascia less flexible. Fascia is a sheet of connective tissue that surrounds muscle and other soft tissues. The loss of fascia flexibility means increased stiffness causing structural imbalance, decreased range of motion, joint pain and dysfunction. Stiffness that may start off localized can eventually affect the entire body. Research supports that foam rolling increases blood flow to targeted muscles and can help with recovery. I recommend rolling each muscle area for 2-5 minutes and spend more time on the areas that are extra stubborn. For sensitive or sore areas, its best to work the surrounding areas first and then gradually work the specific area. Foam rolling after a workout helps decrease muscle tension, decrease soreness, increase clearing of lactate build up, increase hydration to the fascia, increase flexibility and decrease the regeneration time of new muscle cells.

    • Stretch: Stretching at the end of a workout is very important and enhances flexibility, reduces muscle tension, and helps with muscle recovery and repair.