Rest and Recovery are Key When Making Changes to Fitness Routine
With all the changes to indoor facilities, there has been a surge in outdoor recreational sports like hiking, trail running, and biking over the past few months.
While the benefits of outdoor exercise are immense, a change in routine may leave you feeling pretty sore and tired in the first few sessions as your body tries to adapt.
What’s Happening to Your Muscles?
Muscles that haven’t been worked in a while may go through a period of adaptation. During exercise, your muscles start to break down. This muscle micro-trauma can result in something called “delayed-onset muscle soreness” or “DOMS” for short and is entirely normal. When your body becomes accustomed to that type of exercise, the delayed soreness is often minimal.
Fortunately, you can do things to help relieve muscle soreness while your body recovers and repairs the muscle fibers.
What Should You Do?
When moving tight muscles toward full length after a workout, you may experience resistance or pain. The purpose of a stretch is to have more muscle length available, otherwise known as full range of motion.
- Standing Glute Stretch with SMART Strength Band
- Hamstring stretch SMART Strength Band
- Stability Ball Posterior Chain Stretch with the SMART Stability Ball (with your feet grounded on the floor for balance, ease your back over the ball and reach overhead)
Active recovery can be important after a tough workout because it can help your body circulate waste products caused by rigorous activity while promoting blood flow and tissue repair. Be sure to choose activities that don’t get you winded or cause further fatigue to your muscles.
- Light Walking or Gentle Bike Ride
- Standing Crosses with (light) SMART MEDICINE BALL (gently move the medicine ball up and down in front of your body, and then side to side)
- Banded Walks (wrap a light flat band around both shins and side-step back and forth)
Massage: Foam Roll
Massage can also push out the fluid carrying waste products of muscle breakdown, encourage fresh blood to flow, and help muscle rebuild. In fact, massage following exercise can often improve circulation for up to 72 hours later.
Foam rolling is a form of myofascial release, which is a way to use pressure to release tension in the muscles, much like a sports massage. It’s not always feasible to schedule a sports massage right now, so having a foam roller as part of your smart recovery plan is a perfect alternative.
- Outer Thigh Foam Roll with SMART Recovery Foam Roller
- Quad Foam Roll with SMART Recovery Foam Roller
- Inner Thigh Roll with SMART Recovery Foam Roller
You should not only schedule days off from exercise, but focus on getting proper rest at night. When your body gets the recommended 7-9 hours, it produces much of its hormones and growth factors that can aid in daily muscle repair and recovery. In fact, rest is one of the most significant factors in the entire recovery equation.
Pin It For Later!