Maximizing muscle recovery should be a key part of your fitness plan. The sooner your muscles recover, the less you will feel sore, and the sooner they can be efficient at burning calories for you. There are many ways to help aid your bodies recover. Here are a few for your tool box.
Tips for Maximizing Muscle Recovery
Timing of Your Meals
Many of us know that it is important to consume some food shortly after your workout to help recover, but what you eat before is just as important. Since the digestion process can be lengthy, eating a lean protein meal before your workout with complex carbs will help the muscles get the nutrients as soon as possible. Listen to how your body is feeling and how it fits into your day when determining the best time to eat. Anytime from 0-2 hours beforehand will be beneficial.
Focus on the Quality of your Sleep
Getting eight hours of sleep is great, but for many of us this doesn’t happen often. If we do manage to find eight hours, it may not be the best quality of sleep. Sleep is extremely important in the muscle recovery process because it provides the necessary downtime your body needs. To help increase the amount or quality of sleep, try these tips:
- Technology blackout
- Turn off all your electronic devices after a certain time. This will give your mind a break from the constant stimuli.
- Write down what’s on your mind.
- That way you can remove what might be weighing heavily on your thoughts or causing stress. Sleep will help clear your head and you’ll be primed to deal with it later.
- Reduce light or noise.
- Much like your electronic devices, these stimuli can disrupt your regular sleep pattern.
- Try a new pillow.
- Comfortability and neck/back support is everything when it comes to getting a good night’s sleep. Every person is different, so find a comfy pillow that suits your preference.
- Prepare for the next morning.
- This will help create some downtime at the end of your night and give you more rest in the morning.
For more tips on improving your quality of sleep, check out our blog post “8 Tips to Sleep Better Tonight.”
For additional information on how to boost your muscle recovery, check out this article.
If you would like to talk with me about these tips or other ideas that you can do during your fitness session, feel free to contact me with any questions.
As always, stay healthy my friends!
Curt has a B.S. in Health and Human Performance from UW Platteville, is an American College of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer and American Sports and Fitness Association Cycling Instructor. He specializes in Balance, Strength, Endurance, Weight Management, Fitness Event Preparation, Energizing and Enjoyable Fitness, and Health & Wellness Guidance. Curt lives by the philosophy of “Every Journey Starts With A Single Step.” – Lao Tze. And he believes that no matter where you are in your life it is never too late for a healthy start.
This information is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent any disease. All material in this article is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you have regarding a medical condition, and before undertaking any diet, exercise, or other health program.