Let’s make this real simple: No Recovery = No Change No Change = no fat loss, no strength gain, no endurance gain.
If you’re putting your time and energy into working out you are striving for change. Yes? YES!
Rest: to cease motion, work or activity, to refrain from exercise. To lie down, especially to sleep. To be at peace or ease, be tranquil. To be, become, or remain temporarily sill, quiet or inactive.
Recovery: to get back; regain. To restore (oneself) to a normal state. To compensate for. To regain a normal or usual condition.
I don’t know about you but Recovery sounds a lot better than Rest when looking at the definition. “regain a normal condition”? Yes please! I am far from ‘normal’ most days.
Don’t get me wrong, rest is VERY important. When you’re not rested you eat more, you’re grumpy, brain function is sluggish, not to mention you don’t look very good when you’re over tired. In fact, rest if a small PART OF recovery. BUT taking a day or two off from exercise is the slacker’s recovery. It’s the lazy man’s way out. Look at it this way:
Your workout = 1 hour/day Remaining = 23 hours/day
You don’t get “fitter” when you’re training, it happens when you’re recovering. During recovery your body adapts to the stress of exercise. It’s replenishing energy store and repairing damaged tissues. Without proper recovery, muscle breakdown and energy depletion continues.
* 1-2 days per week don’t train hard, even if you really want to
* all you’re craving is pizza and beer – don’t. Choose healthy options to nourish and restore energy supplies
* turn your computer/tv/iPad off and GO TO SLEEP
* roll out with a foam roller, lacrosse ball or a massage stick
* get a massage, visit the chiropractor
* flexibility training
Short Term Recovery
* the hours right after intense exerciseim
* low intensity work to cool down & days after (aka don’t work the same muscle group intensely two days in a row, light work the next day will help them recover)
* replenish energy stores – high quality foods NOT high quantity ——–>
* your muscles/tendons/ligaments are repairing & removing chemicals that build up during exercise
* SLEEP (8 hours per night)
* recovery days (1-3 per week depending on your training schedule/fitness level)
* change in your routine & program (intensity, time)
How do you know if your under-recovered?
* no longer excited to go to the gym
* performance/poor workout ruins your day
* chronic muscle soreness
* sleep pattern becomes irregular
* not well rested in the a.m.
* NEED a monster/espresso to get fired up for your workouts
* crave carbs/sugars more than you used too (when you’re over tired your body is trying to look for other ways to refill it’s energy stores.)
* getting sick a lot or can’t kick the sick out
* training hard and eating right but that little belly pooch won’t go away
* gaining fat instead of losing it
* resting heart rate elevated
* energy level is always low
* you’re cranky/irritable
* under-hydrated – pee is dark yellow (it should be a pale yellow color)
Recap: Work hard, eat healthy, drink water, sleep, recover.
Train – Recover Train Hard – Recover Hard Train Harder – Recover Harder