You've got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em, know when to walk away and know when to run” who knew Kenny was talking about cross training ?
Why does recovery matter and what does is actually mean?
Well for those of us crazies thats like to train hard, compete or for pro athletes the main link in performance gains, remaining injury free, balancing happy hormones and preventing burn out or exhaustion, it’s not who can train harder, its who can recover faster so they can get to the gym to train again.
It doesn’t matter if you are a weekend warrior or an expert at fast exercise the same principles apply.
Sleep - Nothing else matters unless you are getting 8-10 hours a night. You wont get bigger, stronger, faster, better, lean out or even learn that new skill or technique if you aren’t getting enough sleep. Thats when the goos ish happens. I have many other blogs on this topic, I have suffered insomnia badly myself and have a truck load of tips if you need help, reach out.
Nutrition - You need food to repair, to fuel your next session and how good is food though ? I’m not a dietician and the internet is full of fitness experts giving advice on macros and food timing. I’m going to stay in my lane and just say this think of you body as a sports car, stop putting 2 stroke fuel in it! You need premium baby! Limit refined sugar and alcohol and focus on Real Food, Mostly plants.
Get a dietician, they are cheeper than you expect and worth every cent if you arent sure what or how much to eat. If you are training hard and sore and tired all the time you might not be eating enough.
Rest Days - Take one! Simple. I can hear the grumble . Do you need one? No but it F’ing helps.
When we train we are causing micro injury to our muscles, like a tiny version of when we trip and graze our knee as a child. This means they heal up stronger and better. This takes time and if we keep picking at the scab, it takes longer to heal.
High Physical and mental loads, from your 9-5 might also impact your training, if there is a higher cumulative stress in your life you may need to consider going to 5 days during that period.
Listen to your body, if you have a back ache you don’t normally have, sore elbows and knees, reduction in strength or fitness at the gym, changes to mood, sex drive etc etc etc you might just need a day or two off. Normally what happens is we get frustrated and try add more work as we feel like we are going backwards, just bloody stop!
You’re body is trying to tell you its not keeping up with the demands.
Know when to hold’em, Know when do take a day off
The other benefit for a day out of the gym is Mental endurance and sustainability of your sport. If you do something all the time, no matter how much you love it, you will get burnt out by the repetition. Some space in your life for other relationships and hobbies will help you as a whole human and help you to be a better athlete.
I have waffled on longer than I planned to I’m going to do this in 2 parts so prevent TLDR replies.
Next week ill chat about hot and cold therapies, Magnesium, body work and Active recovery sessions. Let me know if there is something else you want to know about