How to Help Your Muscles Recover from a Workout
Nothing equals the joy of completing a high-powered, passionate workout. “You know, the type that has your muscles vibrating and makes you feel like you absolutely gave it your 500%. This is not only a rewarding accomplishment but also a positive sign that you’re utilizing your gym time to the best advantage you can get. But did you know that how you let your muscles recover after a workout, is about half of the quality of results you get?
Here are a few important things to remember as you take your muscles from one productive workout to the next: Here are some vital tips to keep in mind while you pump up those muscles, one energetic workout at a time:
Make It a Point to Cool Down
Recovery begins as soon as your last burnout or drop set is done. That also means that you certainly cannot simply walk away. One thing you should learn is the habit of staying a few more minutes on the gym floor for the sole purpose of cooling down. For some, this means cardio exercises. They’ll probably spend five to ten minutes biking or walking slowly, easing their cardiac rate back to normal.
Planking or doing a few crunches to seal a workout is great, but nothing works like traditional stretching. It just frees up so much space for your muscles to breathe. Obviously, your stretches will vary according to the muscle group you targeted for the session. In any case, consistency is key to making those stretches effective. It’s the most basic way of recovering from an exhausting workout.
Use Your Gym’s Spa Area
On the main floor of most gyms, you will find an area where guests can stretch. But sometimes, in the locker room itself, there are additional tools that come in handy for muscle recovery. If your gym’s dressing area is equipped with a spa, go ahead and use it! These things are generally part of regular membership, and they can really bring your recovery process to the next level. There are a lot of ways that a hot tub can calm your tired muscles.
Have a Good Recovery Meal
Without a doubt, the one thing you have to do right after each workout is EAT! And make sure this meal is bursting with protein. Before heading out to the gym, make it a habit to pack a protein shake in your bag (in case something comes up and you won’t have time to get a full protein meal). Also check out supplements such as glutamine and creatine and how your muscles can recover better with them, or simply go for more natural foods that have high amounts of water and potassium in them. Lastly, keep in mind that your post-workout meal requirements will depend on what time of day you have your workout, and of course, your general goals for spending time at the gym.