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Recovery exercises: how can our body recover between training sessions?

Recovery is a key element in sports planning, both for high-performance athletes as well as for amateurs. Resting and recovering our body between training sessions allows us to improve our performance, decrease muscle pain, prevent injuries, and generally to feel better when training. 

Sports performance is achieved thanks to two factors: workload and rest. A proper balance among both factors will generate athletic success, and prevent what is known as “Overtraining Syndrome”, which causes a decrease in performance, mood swings, sleep disorders, and hormonal disorders, among other problems.

See also: The value of supplementary physical conditioning in Running

Among the most common recovery practices are sleep regulation, nutrition, massage therapy, either manually or using massage guns, drainage compression boots, stretching and mobility exercises, foam rolls, active recovery (light activity, at 35% of your Heart Rate) and physical agents such as heat or cold. 

See also: The importance of sleeping properly for runners

Massage therapy for physical recovery helps increase blood flow towards the affected areas and improves the permeability of muscle cells. This increases the elimination of metabolic waste produced by exercise, along with facilitating the entry of nutrients and oxygen into the muscle, accelerating its recovery process.

As a result of this, your body will feel fresher and perform better when training, preventing muscle injuries caused by overuse.

Mobility and stretching exercises provide flexibility to the main muscles which have been stimulated and stressed while running, in addition to working the movement ranges of your joints. This will allow your body to achieve a higher efficiency in its movements and, thus, reduce the overload.  

See also: Hydration in runners: the key for an optimized performance

Massage guns offer what is known as percussion or vibration therapy. This type of massage exerts quick pressure bursts on the body’s muscle tissue. The rippling effect of massage guns facilitate a more focalized work in the affected area, helping to avoid DOMS (“Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness”), meaning that it will be less likely for the athlete to feel muscle pain or aches within 24 to 72 hours following intense training. 

In turn, massage therapy by COMPEX electrostimulation produces graduated muscle jolts which increase blood flow towards the area which is being stimulated, aiding in the release of toxins. Also, this system stimulates the release of endogenous endorphins, opioid substances which cause us pleasure and a feeling of wellness. This method also decreases the excitability of the nervous system, achieving an improved relaxation response by the musculoskeletal system. 

Therapress compression boots act on the circulatory and lymphatic systems, producing sequential compressions through an air chamber on the athlete’s legs, in order to sweep out metabolic waste post-training. By eliminating metabolic waste, recovery rate is increased, enabling training without any complications and preventing the accumulation of workloads on the musculoskeletal system.

In conclusion, a properly planned recovery program can improve the efficiency and efficacy of your training sessions. Moreover, it can also aid in tolerating progressive loads in a better way, since your muscles and your joints will be in optimal conditions, thus making your training more effective, increasing performance and preventing injuries. 

See also: Running: What to do when you feel pain while running

Our advice is for you to plan your week ahead, and to record, on a day-to-day basis, what habits and strategies you want to use to provide your body with the recovery time that it needs.

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Paz

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