ELEMENTS of SMART RECOVERY

Here are three Components of Recovery to help you perform your best.

1. SLEEP

Full sleep cycles (around 1.5 hours each) restore our mind and body.  Vital hormones are released during sleep that signal lots of necessary activity.

PLAN AHEAD to get your sleep.  6 hours (minimal), 7.5 hours (decent), 9 hours (good) or 10.5 hours (super luxurious) will enhance immune function, muscle repair, nerve signal regeneration, fat loss (yes, fat loss) and improved mental acuity.

An Example: Your alarm is set for 5:30am so you can be at the gym by 6:00am and work by 8:00am.  You have found that 7.5 hours works for you and is all you have time for during the week.  Plan backwards to get what you need.

5:30am- Time to get up.  Rise and Shine.

10:00pm- You need to be asleep.  Not in bed, ASLEEP!

9:40pm-  Lights out, in the bed and in full relaxation mode.

9:15pm-   All screens off.  Phones, TV, iPad, iPod, Tablet.  Cracking an old fashioned book, listening to chill music, reading stories to the kids, quality alone time with your spouse, prayer or meditation all work here.

9:00pm- Glass of water, wrap up any unfinished business

8:15pm- Last chance to chow.  Don't lie down immediately after a big meal.

2:00pm- Caffeine intake DONE for the day. or you might find yourself watching infomercials at 2am.

And so on and so on and so on, for as many things as need to happen to get you in bed in time.  As you normalize a nighttime routine, it will becomes easier to tweak.  

Again, start with your wake up time and work backwards.

2. REST

More than 3 days of hard training in a row on a regular basis leads to serious diminishing returns, overuse and susceptibility to illness.

Taking a day off in the middle of the week will ENHANCE performance.

Our schedule is designed with this in mind.  We program the same workout forWednesday and Thursday each week.  But not because we want you to do it twice!

If you hit the workout on Wednesday, come in and mobilize or rest on your own on Thursday.  If you rest or mobilize on Wednesday, hit the WOD on Thursday.

My "Ideal" training schedule would be to Train Monday andTuesday, Rest Wednesday, Train Thursday and Friday.  On the weekend, if you are feeling awesome, come Train Saturday.  If you are feeling worn out, do some fun active recovery or just Rest.  Listen to your body and it will pay off.

Of course, we live in the real world and our schedules can dictate things that may not be our first choice. Having trouble making a plan? Let us know.

3. MOBILITY

Improvement of joint mobility, myofascial facility, muscular flexibility, motor control/sequencing, bracing technique and the cuing of proper positioning will have HUGE benefits to your performance, help prevent injury and overcome chronic pain.  We will help you learn to make yourself a smooth running machine.  Start with these five techniques:

  • Self Myofascial Release (SMR)- Massaging your hard working tissues using a lacrosse ball, barbell, foam roller or the edge of a granite countertop (anything firm will do) will help your body break down adhesions between muscle and fascia, aid in releasing spasming muscle fibers and increase blood flow.  Think cross-sectionally, like a butcher, for best results.
  • Flossing/Compression- The twisted cousin of SMR, compression floss will aids in combatting adhesions, trigger points and increases blood flow to tweaked areas.
  • Band Assisted Joint Distraction- Stabilizing the joint, adding tension from a band and THEN stretching the muscles that cause restricted range of motion will have tremendously better results than old-fashioned, outmoded static stretching.  Ask a coach to show you a few of these.
  • PNF Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (Contract/Relax) Easier with a partner, this mode of elongating muscle uses the muscle's natural reaction to contraction to allow for greater end range.  We'll teach you how to do it.
  • Cuing/positioning/sequencing drills- In a non-loaded, low stress environment it is important to practice sending a clear signal from the brain to set the joints up in correct positions with appropriate muscular support.  A join held in optimal position will have measurably better ROM than one rotated the wrong direction even a small distance.

Want to learn more?  Ask one of our mobility guru coaches or visit our friends at the mobility wod by clicking the MWOD link on this page.

Using your fitness outside the gym is another thing we like to encourage.  Being super strong and fit and only using it in our box is, well, sad.  Get out there!

Alex Solomon