Tag Archives: recovery
At the completion of each training cycle, I will take a recovery week where I perform no training. Whilst we have already covered the physiological advantages of having a week off from training, this week I will cover another advantage which can be gained.
It doesn't matter how you train, eat or supplement. Unless your body can recover, you won't be going anywhere fast!
Two new studies show that carbohydrate sports drinks with added protein are best for helping improve recovery from exercise, rather than boosting performance during exercise.
I quite enjoy writing the "three tip" blog posts, so I'm going to continue writing up three quick tips on various topics. I hope you get something out of them too!
Recovery is imperative to obtaining results - whether you are seeking to lose weight, gain muscle or enhance your fitness. Exercise does not result in progress, recovering from exercise does. If you would like to read more on this topic, then I strongly suggest that you sign up to our free "Conquering Your Body" course. Furthermore, search up "recovery" on this website and you'll be hit with a number of articles explaining this concept in more detail.
So, how do we maximise recovery? There are numerous ways to enhance the quality of your recovery outside of the gym. Here are three really important considerations:
Recovering Effective from Exercise Tip 1: Obtain 7-8 Hours of Quality Sleep
Sleep is the time in which your body recuperates. When you are exercising, you place an even heavier reliance on high quality sleep than would normally be. During sleep, your body repairs itself. Vital hormones are secreted which facilitate this recovery process and without sleep, these hormones are unable to get to work. No matter what your health and fitness goal, you NEED to obtain quality sleep!
Recovering Effective from Exercise Tip 2: Establish a Nutritional Regime to Promote Recovery
This is quite a complex topic and one that I'm not going to delve into within this blog post (the "Conquering Your Body" course goes into a fair amount of detail on this topic). In essence, nutrition provides your body with the raw materials needed to repair damaged cells. You need to ensure that you consume the appropriate nutrients, in the appropriate portions, at the optimal time to encourage maximum recovery.
If you train intensely, an appropriate nutritional regime may incorporate various supplements, a pre and/or post workout meal and an increased caloric intake immediately after your workout to accomodate for your body's increased nutrient requirement. But don't forget about the other 22 hours in the day - you always need to ensure that you are eating effectively and healthily!
Recovering Effective from Exercise Tip 3: Don't Overdo the Exercise
More exercise is NOT necessarily better! Too much exercise can result in the inhibition of your results and the undoing of all your hard work! This is what professionals refer to as "overtraining syndrome", whereby you are more prone to such things as:
- Fat gain
- Muscle Loss
- Fitness regression
- Poor appetite
- Poor sleep
- Hormonal imbalance
- Medical complications
Overtraining syndrome occurs when you perform so much exercise that your body does not have a chance to recuperate from it! Remember, exercise is physical stress and your body needs to recover from it. Too much exercise and you will be wasting your time.
This week has been full-on, both mentally and physically. Physically, I had four intense weight and cardio sessions from Monday through Thursday. This is in addition to the physically demanding face-to-face personal training component to my responsibilities. Plus, I the workload has been HUGE this week - which is a really good thing because that means that I'm helping plenty of people.
Today I actually feel quite drained. Whilst I did want to go in for a legs session, I have decided not to. What I've learnt over the years is that you do need to listen to your body and be able to identify when you "need" a rest. Well, today I needed a rest.
It all comes down to recovery. This is a concept that not too many people naturally appreciate, particularly when it comes to muscle gain, fitness or weight loss. The notion of "more is better" can be extremely counter-productive, because our bodies need time to recover from the physical stress of exercise.
At the end of the day, if you continue to hammer your body, it will shut-down. Initially you may feel fatigued or moody, but then you could become sick with a minor illness. Injuries are far more prevalent when you don't allow your body to recover. At a more extreme level, you could actually become quite ill and be hospitalised (I've seen it happen).
Here's an insighful article on recovery that we had published some time ago: Recovery 101: Creating the Ultimate Physique
Unfortunately I'll be away this weekend so I'm not going to get a change to train legs (ideally I would love to train them tomorrow). So, Monday it is! That will give me ample time to rest up and hit it hard next week.
Have a great weekend!