5 Effective Ways to Recover after an Intense Workout

Sports scientists now agree that allowing the correct recovery and sufficient recovery time is essential. It should form part of your workout plan and not just remain an occasional afterthought. Over time, physiological stress without recovery can lead to compromised immune function, leaving you vulnerable to disease, the opposite of what we’re trying to achieve by working out. Follow on for 5 Effective Ways to Recover after an Intense Workout!

1. Cool Down

Recovery begins with a cooling down period, which typically includes some light exercise such as walking. The purpose is more to allow your heart rate to return to normal and reduce muscle soreness and injury than it is about lowering your body temperature, although you may find that result too.

If you find aches and pains continuing after your cooling down period, it may help to use one of these cooling mattresses for active people.

2. Savasana

Also known as the ‘Corpse Pose’ in yoga, Savasana is no longer only something practiced at the end of a yoga class. It is being recommended by sports scientists and professional trainers as something that can benefit everyone, especially after heavy exercise, as it helps your body return to a state of balance after the physiological stress of a workout.

The objective is to relax your body one muscle at a time while focusing on your breathing. It’s a 5-10 minute mindfulness meditation where you focus on breathing, and lying flat on the floor in corpse mode.

3. Rehydrate & Snack

Any intense exercise will have spent a large portion of the body’s store of energy and nutrients, so it’s essential to replace these. For best effect, it’s recommended you do this within 45 minutes from the end of your workout.

Water, coconut water, green tea, and low-sugar sports drinks (containing electrolytes to prevent cramping) are suitable for rehydrating. A healthy snack containing carbohydrates to help restore energy and protein for muscle recovery will help you replenish nutrients and avoid exhaustion.

4. Rest Days (light exercise)

Light exercise such as walking, swimming, and yoga exercise different muscle groups, resting the ones you’ve recently stressed. Aside from this, benefits include the prevention of lactic acid build-up and boosting circulation.

5. Additional Therapies

Something that’s easily accessible to amateurs and professionals alike, is the ability to monitor breathing and heart rate. Indeed, this is so easy to do with the wearable technology available today; it’s becoming the norm for those who do intense exercise.

Professional sportsmen and sportswomen often use some additional therapies. While you may not need them yourself, we’ve included a few for completeness, as you’ve probably heard of them:

  • Massage
  • Compression bandages can aid in healing
  • Cryotherapy can reduce injury, inflammation and pain
  • Hydrotherapy for pain relief
  • Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

The next time you plan your workouts, you’re bound to feel greater benefits if you allow time for recovery and replenishment. Why not try our FREE energy increase method? It’s not difficult to follow these basic ideas, and the upside will be evident almost right away. Just as with most other things in life, it’s important to get the cool down right. Trying to burn hot all the time will just lead to fatigue and breakdown in the end.

Which methods of recovery work best for you after intensive, ‘heavy’ workouts? Let us know in the comments below, and join in the conversation on FacebookTwitter & Instagram

Jennifer Dawson

Jennifer Dawson is an experienced freelance writer who specializes in food and nutrition. Working in fitness marketing previously gave her a good feel for the industry and since going freelance she has been able to explore her preferred topic areas such as diet types, nutrition and food. Outside of work, Jen enjoys traveling, swimming and spending time with her young family.

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