RECOVERY THE SECOND HARDEST EXERCISE
Think about it. When was the last time you felt really rested and relaxed? When was the last time you could clear your head and could go right to sleep?
Why do I say that? Recovery seems to be the last thing you think about or actively do.
Creating Inflammation and Oxidative Stress. Research shows these two will speed up aging. I don’t know about you but I sure don’t want to age faster. I’m doing everything I can to slow it down.
Have you ever noticed that everyone’s in a hurry or always on the smartphone which has become an additional appendage of one’s body? Information overload from social media increases stress with added agitation which leads to more stress then less sleep. This combined with a poor nutritional plan spells disaster for good recovery. The more tired people are, the more they tend to eat to stay awake. And it’s usually junk food we turn to when we are tired.
Here lies the biggest problem, sleep, or lack of, it just seems hard for folks to relax. How often do you sit down, relax, and shutting off your mind or just daydream with a little quiet time? So, what’s the game plan to correct the problem of recovery? What are the things we know to do but don’t, what are the things we can do to recover?
Go to bed at a reasonable hour. Stop using all the electronics one hour before bed. Sleep in a completely dark cool room. Try to get 7 to 8 hours of sleep. Have a good nutrition plan. Some people need make sure you’re not overtraining which leads to harder recovery. This is the one that I have to be reminded of. One sure sign of overtraining and stress is difficulty sleeping. Meditation for 20 to 30 minutes a day to help clear the mind is very beneficial. Massages can help relieve stress and relax the muscles. Soft tissue manipulation to relax trigger points and stretch myofascial tissue can also help.
Then there are supplements to help you sleep. Most widely known is melatonin, but there is chamomile tea, herbs like valerian root and kava. My favorite is ZMA (zinc and magnesium aspartate). The research shows an increase in deep REM sleep and up to 30% increase in strength when taking ZMA. ZMA is one of my most recommended supplements. It is also helpful for those who are low in magnesium.
Recovery is more of a health problem than most people realize. Lack of recovery and sleep has a major strain on the immune system and contributes to weight gain and illnesses.
One of the Biggest things that we have to do is take of ourselves and our body. We only get one!