Post Workout Recovery to Finish Your Workout
When it comes to exercise, it’s so easy to finish your lift, run, circuit…etc. and drop the weights and peace out – this might not be the best tactic. Our guest author breaks down how to get the most out of your workout with some post-workout recovery options!
Your Post Workout Recovery Plan
Eating food and drinking large amounts of clean water aren’t the only steps you should carry out following a workout.
Recovery is another essential step not to be skipped. It includes cooling down and stretching. Here is what you need to know about it and why you shouldn’t avoid it.
If you are new to training, try to avoid this common mistake. Some people think that when they do the final exercise, their workout is over. So wrong! You are not done until you have cooled down. As it is important to warm up before your training session, so it is essential to cool down after it is over. What does it mean?
The purpose of cooling down is to stop exercising gradually so that your breathing and heart rate can return to their normal state. Some people claim this practice helps prevent muscle soreness as well, whereas others reject the statement.
But anyway, you should not cool down post-exercise only to prevent muscle soreness. There are many other benefits of this practice.
For example, if physical activity ceases suddenly, you may feel dizzy for some time after your exercise session is over. In comparison, doing some light exercise after your workout will help you normalize your body temperature (literally cooldown).
Here are several cool-down options for you:
- Go out and walk briskly for about 5-10 minutes. Another option is to cycle or jog slowly. What you need to know is that the exercise you choose to do post-workout should be lower in intensity than your training session.
- Or here is another way to go. Simply continue with the final exercise but make sure to lower the intensity little by little until you stop.
Remember to perform the exercise for about 10-15 minutes before you send your training equipment back to the garage or wherever you store it.
Cooling down is not the final stage of your exercise session, though. Before you go back to your agenda, don’t forget to stretch. Now, many people underestimate stretching.
They believe it is completely unnecessary. And here they are wrong again. Stretching improves flexibility and, according to some, helps avoid injuries and muscle soreness.
One thing is for sure, you will feel much more relaxed after your workout if you take the time to stretch properly.
Here is what to do:
Calf stretch: stand upright. Keeping your left leg straight, step forward with your right leg and bend it. Then start slightly leaning forwards. Hold for a few seconds. Repeat with the left leg.
Inner thigh stretch: sit down on the floor or on a flat clean surface. Bend your legs, your back should be straight. Now put your feet together. Feel the resistance of your muscles.
Try to bring your knees as close to the floor as you can by holding on to the legs. Hold for a few seconds. Repeat with the other leg.
Hamstring stretch: lie on your back on a flat surface (make sure you are comfortably positioned). Raise your right leg bending your left one a little (but make sure it touches the floor).
Keep your right leg straight and try to bring it closer to your face. Don’t get too carried away. When you feel more resistance than you can bear, it’s time to cut it out.
Buttock stretch: lie down on a flat surface. Bend your legs and pull your knees towards the chest. Cross one leg over the opposite thigh. Bring the opposite leg close to your chest.
Hold for a few seconds and repeat with the other leg.
Thigh stretch: now lie down on one side. Start with the right one. With your left hand grab your left foot. Pull it, trying to reach the left buttock. While at this, make sure your knees are touching one another.
There is going to be some resistance in the front of your left thigh. That’s pretty normal. Don’t pull too much or you may cause muscle soreness. Hold on for a few seconds. Repeat with the other leg.
After cooling down and stretching you should feel totally revitalized.
Follow these two post-workout “exercises” to maximize the efficiency of your workouts and to keep your body safe.