Today we are going to go over three things that are commonly forgotten after a workout and why you should be doing them to ensure proper recovery and maximum energy throughout your day.
1. Cool Down
This is one thing that many individuals overlook after their workout. Many of us are probably just looking forward to being done so that we can collapse on the floor in the fetal position or at least go home and rest. However, this is not good for our bodies and may even be detrimental to our recovery.
During exercise you are putting more stress on your body than it is use to. This is necessary because this is how our body learns to adapt and change. Because of this though, our bodies need a way to come down from that heightened state of stress that it is being put under during exercise. This is where your cool down routine should come into play.
In order to return your body to its normal state it is best to gradually allow it to come back down. This includes your blood flow, breathing and muscular range of motion. A cool down can involve any light activity that allows your blood to keep flowing regularly in order for nutrient delivery to occur while allowing your heart rate and breathing to return to normal.
Foam rolling is a great cool down activity that promotes blood flow as while returning your muscles to full range of motion. Following a foam rolling routine after exercise can do great things in terms of recovery and nutrient delivery.
During exercise your body loses water. Because of this you should drink water during your workout to ensure that your body has a sufficient amount of water to function properly. Our muscle work best when they are properly hydrated and loss of strength is one side effect of dehydration.
While it is important to stay hydrated during your workout it is equally important to rehydrate after your workout. You should try to drink anywhere from 8 to 16 ounces of water to allow for proper hydration and recovery. Continue drinking water throughout your day to support hydration, nutrient delivery and overall recovery.
This one is not hard for most of us to remember. After a workout you may feel like eating anything that is placed in front of you and more. A good way to avoid this feeling is by getting proper nutrition before your workout and then following up your workout with a healthy meal.
Our favorite post-workout meal is an Ideal Shake. This is because it has what you need for a complete workout recovery. It contains protein for lean muscle recovery, and a full range of vitamins and minerals to restore those lost during exercise.
Not only will water and a meal after your workout give your body what it needs to recover properly but it also acts as a pick me up so that you can go about your daily activities as needed. By getting essential nutrients back into your body you will feel and perform better throughout the day.
If you are one to regularly forget one or more of these essential post workout steps, find a way to remind yourself after every workout. Put a note in your gym bag or wear a wristband as a reminder. Do whatever you have to do in order to remember. You will be amazed at how much better your body will recover and at the added energy you will have throughout your day.
By Wes Young