Training, adaptation, recovering, and overcompensation are the poker of aces in high-performance sports. To quickly repair the damaged tissues after exercise, to renew the energy reserves and to recover as soon as possible so you can be ready for the next training is essential for an athlete with High-Intensity Trainings to progress and exceed its limits. If we know how to handle these vital times of activity and rest properly, we will have a winning hand, we will defeat overtraining and win the game of our physical improvement.
Here we show you some secrets that top-level athletes use after every competition or High-Intensity Training.
Replace salt and liquids
During the exercise, especially in resistance sports, we lose salts and water and we have to replace them quickly to have an appropriate recovery. Water helps the transport of nutrients within our body and is also in charge of the elimination of residues and of waste products from metabolism, among many other organic functions. Mineral salts regulate the balance of organic liquids, they help in some metabolic processes, they also help with the correct functioning of the immunological system, and they help different substances to enter the cells, e.g. the glucose needs sodium so it can be used. They are also part of bigger molecules like the iron in the hemoglobin. Therefore, it is essential to replace and re-balance the water and salts levels to obtain an optimal recovery and improve our performance.
This technique consists of alternating hot and cold water, producing a vasoconstriction-vasodilation effect on blood vessels. This “pumping” favors transpiration, relaxes the muscles and the joints, and it helps to eliminate waste products that come as a consequence of High-Intensity Training. Some research has also proven that they reduce the delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS).
They activate the circulation and stimulate the lymphatic system which is in charge of the elimination of waste metabolites from our body.
Sleeping more than 8 hours.
To sleep properly is not only important, but it is essential for the recovery and the performance of any athlete with a High-Intensity Training. During sleep, the muscles relax, we reduce our metabolic expenditure and we release hormones and other substances that strengthen our immunity system and help with the growth and recovery of the tissues.
After 36h of a demanding training, it is the time to discharge the muscles in a deeper way, although it will always depend on the degree of adaptation to this type of massage, that will also help us to improve our circulation, to get rid of toxins and to replace dead cells, and above all to discharge possible muscle cramps.
The recovering protocol recommended for an athlete with a High-Intensity Training after a competition is as follows:
– Just after finishing: 15`of low-intensity exercise + 15`of soft stretching.
– After 30`: Post Training smoothie + fruit
– After 45: `15′ of a cold bath (keeping the upper train warm)
– After 1h30: 50`of post training electric stimulation in the most heavily loaded areas.
– After 2h30: 30′ of lymphatic massage
– After 3h: 40′ compressive socks
– After 5h: Contrast baths 3x(5′ hot + 3′ cold)
– Depending on the fatigue degree after the competition or training after 24-36 hours a soft training + stretching + discharge massage. Followed by a day of rest.
To support high loads of training in a short period of time a strong base forged after years of dedication, perseverance, and of a job well done is required. This “ritual” is not magical.
To learn to listen to your body when it demands more rest is your best-recovering strategy and your common sense your best tool to avoid overtraining and to continue with your progress.