7 Tips to Optimize Your Post-Workout Routine
We all have changed our lifestyles during this coronavirus pandemic, and we found ways to enjoy life at home. However, as many countries begin to relax quarantine measures, gyms reopen. Many people will rush to the gyms, as it is challenging to keep your body shape and muscle strength while staying home for two months. Many men engage in challenging, and difficult workout routines, but not all pay attention and take care of their post-workout routine.
Rest and recovery are as important as exercising, but many fail to pay attention to the after-part of workouts. Your post-workout routine has an essential effect on your muscle strength and fitness gains because it allows you to exercise more effectively.
Here are seven tips that will help you build and optimize your post-workout routine.
- Don’t Skip Stretching and Cool Down.
Recovery after intense training and effort is essential because it helps you build your strength. It is critical to muscle and tissue repair, especially after weight training. This is why you shouldn’t do the same weight exercises or work on the same muscle groups two days in a row. Your muscles need at least 24 hours to build up, and exercising too soon can prevent this.
Stretching must be done before and after a workout. The optimal moment to do this is immediately after the workout, as your muscles are already warm and pliable. This allows you to work on your flexibility and improve it.
Many men underrate the positive effect stretching has on muscle growth and avoid stretching after a workout. But it can help you have limber muscles and joints, which will help you perform certain movements better.
The same goes for cooling down in cold water. It prevents muscle damage and fatigue, and also those feelings of stiffness or soreness of the muscles.
When you eat carbs, they are stored in your muscles as glycogen. During weight lift training, you take your energy from glycogen molecules that are broken down in glucose. Glucose is the one that gives you the energy you need during a workout, and it comes from your muscles.
However, after an intense workout, your level of glycogen in your muscles is significantly lower. So, if you plan another workout and you want to have a high performance, you need to eat carbs to replenish your glycogen levels.
- Drink Water
During a workout, your body uses a lot of fluids, and replenishing the level of fluids in your body is essential. You lose a lot of water by sweating during an intense workout, and water plays a critical role in your body. It supports your body’s metabolic functions and nutrient transfer.
Also, drinking enough water after a workout is crucial because it helps and speeds the recovery process. You lose about a quarter of water during intense training, which depends on the room temperature.
Make sure you drink enough water and replenish your fluids level as this is important for reducing your muscle and joint pain. Water plays a vital role in lubricating them.
- Get Enough Sleep
Our bodies have an incredible power to recover, if only we give them the time and space they need. Sleeping is essential, especially after intense training, because it helps you restore your energy levels. Even though you might think that nothing is happening in your body while you sleep, you’re mistaken.
During sleep, your body produces the growth hormone, which is useful in muscle and tissue repair. Also, a lack of sleep has been associated with lower testosterone levels, and this can be damaging for your body. Testosterone plays an essential role in the process of muscle protein synthesis.
Sleep at least 8 hours per day after a workout to make sure you keep your hormone levels optimal.
- Get a Massage
The benefits of getting a massage after a workout are numerous. It reduces the soreness of your muscles by reducing inflammation. A good massage after an intense training speeds cell recovery, thus reducing the time needed for recovery.
However, this doesn’t mean that the next day you should exercise the same muscle group. Your body, muscles, and tissue still need rest after an intense workout. To have the best effect, you should get a message as soon as you end your training.
- Choose Foods Rich in Potassium and Sodium
Potassium and sodium are important when talking about health and muscle strength. They are essential minerals in our bodies that support the heart, kidneys, and other organs.
Low potassium levels are associated with muscle cramps and fatigue after a workout. That’s why you need to replenish potassium levels by choosing foods rich in this mineral, such as bananas, spinach, or broccoli.
The same goes for sodium. It is an important electrolyte that helps regulate water levels in your cells. Sodium is essential for nerve function, and blood volume and low levels of it can cause dehydration and muscle cramps. Choose foods rich in sodium to replenish its low levels after a workout, as you lose sodium through sweat. Eat foods such as nuts, carrots, or meat.
- Manage Stress
Wanting to get back in shape and having high expectations of yourself and your body can put some strain on your mind. You need to change your perspective on workouts and see them as opportunities to relax. You know you need time and consistent exercising to ensure the fitness of your body.
Stress can have adverse effects on your workout and muscle strength, as it increases inflammation and pain in the body. To reduce the amount of stress you are experiencing, you can start practicing meditation. It is already known that if practiced regularly, it can increase wellbeing, reduce pain, improve heart rate, and help your body relax. And after a good workout routine, your muscles surely need to relax.
Having intense training and keeping your body in shape is important for most men. However, few men pay attention to the post-workout routine, which is so crucial for the recovery process. Keep in mind that your muscles need at least 24 hours to relax and give yourself time to rest.
Take care of your diet, and be sure you include foods rich in potassium, sodium, and carbohydrates to replenish your levels. Drink enough water, get enough sleep, and always take time for stretching and cooling down after a workout.
Author Bio: Leon Collier is a blogger from the UK, who currently works at an essay writing service UK where he offers online assignment help. He loves to write about everything: fitness, nutrition, travel, self-development, well-being. When not writing, you can find him behind a pile of books; he loves to delve in. Follow him on Twitter @LeonCollier12