Recovery: Part 1
This 3 part series on recovery will be focusing on 3 big questions…
How well do you sleep?
Are you fueling your body properly?
Are you listening to your body?
The body recovering properly isn’t just for the sole purpose of you feeling good enough to workout the next day. Sure, sore muscles can hinder performance in a workout; but to me, recovery means more than just being able to walk up stairs after squat day. To me, recovery means being able to live life to your full potential. We workout to become strong and fit, so we are prepared for life’s unknown. Maybe we’re training for sport, or just to be able to play with our children pain free. As we strive for whatever our goals may be, our bodies need the proper care to be able to keep up with our daily lives. Whether you workout once a day, three times a day, or don’t workout at all, our bodies are these complex machines that need the proper maintenance and care that any machine with a shelf life would. I know it’s depressing to say something like that, but it’s true. If you don’t get your oil changed in your car, change its tires, replace the spark plugs, or even get it washed, chances are that car won’t last you the 10 to 15 to 20 years that it was meant to last. Same goes with your body too.
So the first question I pose to you is: How well do you sleep? Not how long do you sleep or are you going to bed early enough? This question dives into the quality of sleep. Sure, length of sleep plays a factor. A car won’t run long on only a quarter tank of gas. Same goes with your body on only 3 hours of sleep. The recommended dose of sleep per night is at least 7 hours. But is it a quality sleep? Are you going to bed with a mind full of stress about what you didn’t get done that day or what your plans are for the next day? Are you waking up 3 times a night because you’re in an unbearable amount of back pain? After constant beat down all day long, your body needs its chance to recover.
As mentioned before, your body does a great deal of work throughout the day and it knows when and how it needs to recover, so don’t keep it from doing its job. Give your body the quality 7 hours of sleep it was meant to have, and if you can’t, make sure it is at least a quality sleep. Here are some tips that might help with that…
Clear your mind. Find something to separate you from your daily activities that lowers your heart rate and washes away the stress. Read a book, meditate or go through some breathing exercises, listen to some soft music or a podcast. Whatever it may be, create a separation from your daily stress.
Do you wake up throughout the night in pain? Time to get that fixed. Go to your local practitioner (shout out Dr. Walters at Spinal Care Chiropractic!!) and tell them your situation and let them do their job. Maybe it’s a mattress issue, but maybe it’s not. Sure, we do some soft tissue recovery work here at Kazam, but if it’s an every night deal that is keeping you from sleep, lets get it fixed.
Sleep in a comfortable environment. Not too hot or too cold, but my recommendation is cool. Like I’ve stated many times in this post already, your body is a fierce machine and it knows how to regulate its temperature. When your body is too hot, it sweats to try to keep itself cool. When you’re rolling around it wet sheets from sweating throughout the night, I don’t know about you but it’s really uncomfortable and keeps me awake. When you find a comfortable temperature to sleep at, your body doesn’t have to over work itself to regulate your body temperature to it’s normal 98.6 degrees, keeping you from waking up throughout the night.
Stay tuned for next week’s segment.