Pro athletes know that rest and recovery are essential steps when training. After they put their body through a significant amount of stress during training, they give it time to repair, recover, and come back (stronger).
If most of us are bad at properly recovering, athletes excel at it because they don’t afford to injure themselves before a competition or match. It’s in their best interest to do some additional work to encourage their body to recover, so they have created specific rituals and routines they stick to, even if the world ends. (Well, not really because the latest pandemic isolated everyone at home, and some had to adapt their routines, but you got the point).
Some of the methods this article presents have been researched and have shown great potential to help to relieve sore muscles and encouraging recovery. Still, it’s impossible to predict the results they have for every individual. And, we should also mention that sometimes people notice positive results due to the placebo effects.
The bottom line is that you need to discover the right method for you because every athlete uses the one that works for them.
Athletes use various methods to enhance their recovery, and they vary according to the type of workout or activity they perform, the time until the next session, the event they need to attend, and the equipment available.
Most athletes incorporate hydrotherapy in their recovery routine because it encourages well-being no matter the type of exercise they perform. Even if there is no research to support the benefits hydrotherapy has for recovery, anecdotal evidence shows that the human body responds positively to water immersion. When soaking into the water, the body experiences changes in blood flow, peripheral resistance, heart function, and alterations in the muscle, skin and core temperature. The changes in temperature and blood flow are the ones that may encourage recovery because they lower inflammation, improve the immune function, alleviate muscle soreness, and fight the perception of fatigue.
If you’re a biker, follow the piece of advice Tassana Landy offers. She is a pro cyclist who has recently discovered her love for rowing, so you can imagine the strenuous workouts she adheres to. She states that a hard workout on the water equals four hours of regular training, so she has to help her body recover and stay to this schedule for long periods. Her secret to bouncing back is to eat healthily, do corpse pose upside-down, and walk her dogs. She doesn’t consider yoga inversions a workout; she finds them a relaxing way to help her body heal and recovery balance after training.
Her two dogs also help her recover because even when she is exhausted, she has to walk them, and strolling is beneficial for the body after exercising. After a long walk, she has a lot of water and a protein bar. Before going to bed, she has a hot bath because it helps her to fall asleep quickly.
We can also refer to this practice as cold therapy. In the past cold therapy involved applying ice on the sore area or taking ice baths, but nowadays the science behind it evolved, and there are other ways to use cold to relieve pain and strain. Cryotherapy is a more convenient way to recover after working out without the numbness, stiffness, and risk of spills, cold baths brought. Some products mimic the same reaction by targeting the inflamed areas and relieving pain.
The topicals that function on the same principle as cryotherapy create a sensation that overrides pain signals to the brain, so they lower muscle sores and help the body bounce-back to its pain-free state quickly.
Pro athletes use cryotherapy when they’re looking for a quick remedy for their post-workout pain.
Protein and potassium
Jess Sporte is an adaptive climber, and she needs a particular recovery routine to empower her to get back to the wall daily. Climbing requires plenty of strength and endurance, so she has to enlist in cardio and weight lifting if she wants to excel. She is daily using the stationary bike, row machine, and dumbbells. After a cardio session, she has climbing-specific workouts like system board and pull-ups, so she works her body extensively.
For Jess Sporte, the best recovery method implies eating protein and potassium-rich foods. This way, she offers her body the needed nutrients to rebuild and replenish lost electrolytes. Before going to bed, she does static stretching.
Plenty of sleep and rest
Athletes are addicted to exercise, so they struggle with resting and getting enough sleep. Because they love the sport so much, they want to work as hard as they can to get the results they desire, and sometimes they forget how important sleep is. Often, a hard workout pumps the body with adrenaline, and they cannot sleep, even if rest works as restorative therapy. So they need assistance to go to bed, and they use natural products like the ones from this website to calm their body and recover balance.
Often, they have coffee in the morning to survive demanding training, and while it helps them to stay active during the day, it can deter their sleep if they sip it in the afternoon. So natural remedies have the role to help them fall asleep. Eight hours of sleep allow their body to perform essential duties like balancing hormones, regulating blood pressure, and maintaining temperature.
Sleep deprivation triggers decreased performance and an increased risk of injuries. Athletes don’t afford a single night of sleep deprivation because it can hurt their endurance for an extended period.
So, their last piece of advice would be to maintain a healthy bedtime routine, which implies turning off your phone, switching down all electronics from the bedroom, having a hot bath before going to bed, and sleeping somewhere between seven and nine hours each night.
Are you sore all the time? The above methods can help you improve your performance and alleviate the post-workout effects. Try them all and pick the ones that work for your body.