10 POST-WORKOUT MUSCLE RECOVERY TIPS

You take your training seriously in the gym – but what does your recovery look like? Here's how to boss your recovery with 10 easy tips.

1 RECOVERY FROM THE START – INTRA WORKOUT BCAA’S

Intra-workout BCAA's are an effective way to support real-time muscle recovery, providing essential leucine to trigger protein synthesis. If you train hard then BCAA supplementation is likely to give you a noticeable impact on recovery and subsequently your rate of progression.

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2 POST WORKOUT SHAKE (PWO) – THE NO BRAINER 

Loading muscles with a combination of quality proteins, creatine, glutamine and carbohydrates in the post-workout window is the ideal method of triggering effective muscle recovery following hitting the weights. The exact best time to drink a PWO shake such as OMNI MX® HARDCORE  continues to be studied in labs and debated by pro scientists – but consuming your shake within 30-60 minutes of training, followed-up with a meal 90 minutes later, remains the best advice. 

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3 EPSOM SALTS BATH / CONTRAST SHOWER

Contrast showers are a proven way to flush away muscle toxins and control inflammation – try 30-60 second hot:cold contrasts (with time you should be able to tolerate more cold).

In the evening follow-up with an Epsom salt bath by adding 2 cups to hot water – a proven method that athletes raves about when it comes to combatting the DOMS and boosting regenerative sleep.

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4 DIY ICE THERPAY

Another hack for trashed muscles is post-workout ice massage: Fill a paper cup with water and stick it in the freezer over night. Massage the ice over trained muscle for 10-15 minutes to significantly reduce next day soreness.

5 DARK CHERRY JUICE SMOOTHIE

Pick-up a carton of tart cherry juice or some concentrate from a health shop – blend it with some protein for a research proven dose of muscle repairing nutrients. Cherry juice has also been shown to support quality sleep, in addition to combating inflamed muscles.

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6 ESSENTIAL OIL MUSCLE MASSAGE

Deep tissue massage is an integral part of elite trainers' recovery strategy – but it's usually over-looked by regular physique trainers. For best results invest in a specialist essential oil blend containing eucalyptus, ginger and peppermint (add lavender if it's pre-sleep). You can massage your muscles yourself, find a therapist, use a foam roller – or find someone who really digs your muscles!

7 PRE-BED SNACK / SUPPLEMENTS

A light snack 60-90 minutes before sleep containing a mix of fast and slow proteins, quality fats (and optional carbs) sends you to bed relaxed and in a positive nitrogen balance to promote muscle repair and growth. Whether to include carbs depends on your macro's and if you sleep better with a shot of carbs which tend to have a relaxing cookieimpact.

A few of our favourites......

*PROTEIN COOKIE and glass of whole milk

*Cottage cheese on toasted rye bread

*Multi-source protein powder mixed with oatmeal

Adding a serving of essential fatty acids is ideal to eat with a pre-sleep meal – helping to prevent blood sugar spikes and provide essential fats that aid recovery. Add some cinnamon powder to for extra support.

8 SLEEP IN DARK ROOM

If you've trashed your muscles – then leading sleep experts recommend boosting the synthesis of recovery and growth hormones, by sleeping in a cool, ultra-dark room – strictly zero lighting! If your room isn't really dark – get your hands on a sleep mask and watch the quality of your Zzzz and muscle recovery go to another level.

9 RECOVERY SESSION

It's easy to stimulate a muscle and forget about it for 5-7 days – and there's nothing wrong with this approach. But for maximum recovery, a light recovery session the following day can really speed things up and potentially boost strength and muscle integrity. Try these non-gym recovery tools:

*Light jog for 15-30 minutes

*Massage/foam rolling (work those knots!)

*Bodyweight exercises (not to failure)

*Contrast showers/muscle icing

*Stretchingimg-20160920-wa0012

10 CONSISTENCY

If you train regularly, your bodies in a constant state of repair – if you've trained chest on Monday, then it'll still be recovering when you hit legs a day or two later. This makes a consistent recovery strategy key to maximum training intensity and progress. The better your set-up – the better your results; over-time the impact can be big!

Pictures courtesy of SCI-MX Ambassador Linford Dash. Drop him a follow:

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