Sunday, June 7, 2015

How to prevent soreness

We had a very tough Saturday workout!
It is nice to push out bodies sometimes in a longer WOD in order to prepare our bodies for events like Mudruns, 5k 10ks, competitions, and strenuous summer vacations.

Here are some things to consider when trying to make sure that you have the best recovery after a tough WOD like Saturday.

1 - Nutrition - Immediately after a workout, you have a maximum of about two hours to efficiently absorb what you eat as repair fuel. If you do not eat, you may not have enough carbohydrate energy for your next workout, you will certainly not have the protein you need to repair muscles, and you will not have enough healthy fat for your hormones and joints. Try a bowl of brown rice with lean meat, a protein shake with whey protein powder, and a Kill Cliff. Or even a slice of last night's pizza.

#2 - Hydration - Your muscles need fluid, so when it comes to recovery, dehydration is one of your biggest enemies. Hydration starts first thing in the morning. If you know a tough WOD is coming up you need to drink one 20-24oz bottle. Then Post WOF, drinking a recovery drink like Kill Cliff is a good start. Then try to drink one 20-24oz bottle of water for each hour of exercise. Within a few hours after a workout, your urine should be light yellow or clear. If it is dark yellow, then you are inadequately hydrated. If it is any other color of the rainbow for that matter, you either need to get glasses or see your physician asap.

#3 - Supplementation - taking certain supplements can help with soreness in the joints and muscles. Without going into super detail, here is a list of anti-inflammatory supplements that I take either through my IDlife pills or other sources.
Fishoil, CoQ10, Tumeric, Bromelain (pineapple), Ginger, and Sweet potatoes.
Please ask me if you are interested in learning more.

#4 - Compression - Performing a brief cool-down after a workout helps contracting muscles squeeze out excess soreness-generating fluids. In the same way, techniques such as massage and a foam rolling can not only help to move inflammatory fluids out of the muscle, but also can remove tight spots from the worked muscles. If possible, use a foam roller faily (or after every strenuous WOD) and schedule a massage once a month (Jorge is always available)

#5 - Blood Flow - Circulation of blood in and out of a stressed body part improves speed of recovery. Techniques that can improve blood flow include cooling down after your workout with a walk or easy bike ride, wearing compression garments, performing light stretching during or after each workout, alternating every 30-60 seconds between hot and cold running water in your post-workout shower, taking an ice bath after a strenuous weight training workout or long run, and performing a light walk, swim, or easy exercise routine the day after a hard workout.

#6 - Topical Ointments - There are several compounds that you can rub on a muscle to eliminate soreness and improve recovery. Most of these compounds work by creating a pain-relieving and cooling sensation, increasing blood flow, or displacing elevated levels of calcium. Popular ointments  that have worked for me include Tiger Balm, Arnica rub, Traumeel, Ben-Gay, and magnesium oil. All of these ointments can be rubbed into the muscle immediately after and up to several days after a workout, until soreness subsides.

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