In order for you to see tangible results in how you look and how you feel, training is crucial. If you’re up for more challenge, then training harder seems to be the best thing to do. But training constantly is the key to prominent and lasting change to your performance, body structure, and overall health and well-being.
Unfortunately, there are many things that can possibly interfere with this required consistency in training. Both your personal and professional life, in addition to daily hassles, can make you miss the time supposedly for your training. But the most menacing obstacle to a smooth workout schedule is an injury.
The injury here doesn’t mean muscle soreness and joint pains since they’re part of the training process. We’re talking about soft-tissue damages to muscles, tendons, and ligaments. These can be both acute and chronic, which need more time to fully heal.
And while these tissues recover, the rest of your form gets compromised – muscle is lost, fat is preserved, and lungs get back to stasis or inactivity. Of course, the worse your injury is, the longer you need for recuperation, slowing down your progress.
The good news is that there are things you can do to strengthen your joints and muscles against these kinds of injuries. These are as simple as taking a few pre-habilitative steps pre and post-training. Some of these techniques can even instantaneously and significantly enhance performance and recovery.
Simply put, by doing these steps you’ll be able to train more intensely and frequently but with reduced risk of injury. Here are things you can do:
1. Don’t stretch pre-workout
According to studies, static stretching before working out can affect your strength negatively. Rather than do static stretching, it’s better to do the dynamic kind instead since it requires you to do numerous range-of-motion workouts that boost your body’s temperature, rouse your nervous system and generally gear up your joints and muscles.
While dynamic stretching regimens vary to a great extent, the objective should be able to spend 3-5 minutes engaging in a series of movements of heightening intensity. If you’ve done it correctly, your heart rate should be up accompanied by light sweating.
2. Getting a massage
Massage is a recuperative process that facilitates greater circulation of blood while making sure the muscles, connective tissues, and fascia are elastic and healthy. This also leads to faster recovery. Since massage can cost you, you can opt for a high-density foam roller to help you get rid of those annoying knots and release tension in throbbing muscle bellies. Even though there’s pain in the beginning, the use of foam rollers can help revitalize muscles and tendons between training. Nonetheless, getting a massage every now and then will prove to be beneficial.
3. Stretching after workout
Stretching can either be beneficial or not, depending on when you do it. As mentioned earlier, static stretching is discouraged before you work out. But after training is a different story. So, after your workout, it’s time to sit and perform static stretches with the muscle groups that you’ve just worked on. Warm muscles are suppler than cold ones, which mean that you’ll obtain a more efficient stretch with less possibility of injury if you do it at this time.
To do it right, hold each stretch for at least 30 seconds. You can hold it up to 90. Breathe slowly and deeply on every stretch as you breathe deeper into every stretch upon exhaling. Static stretching after your training can also help to accelerate your body’s recuperation. Plus, it has been proven to alleviate muscle soreness the following day so that you can resume your daily routine without worrying about physical discomforts brought by muscle pains.
A lot of people begin a new workout regimen only to stop after a week with excruciating body pains because they got too excited and forgot they need to rest in between. Your enthusiasm naturally makes you believe that you should be consistent in performing your new routine no matter what, even if your body is telling you otherwise.
To avoid the aching shoulders, knees and back due to being overly motivated even when your body stops cooperating, you need a more effective strategy. This would be to moderate your initial efforts and work on a gradual development from week to week. When it comes to seeing solid results, patience is also vital. You’re not required to lift all the weight on your first day. As mentioned, gradual progression is more effective.
Moreover, it is essential to allow your muscles to recuperate between training. The ideal guideline that you can follow here is 48 to 72 hours of rest. Of course, the importance of sleep cannot be emphasized enough.
If you’re not getting sufficient shut-eye, which is 7-9 hours per night, you can mess with your central nervous system’s ability to suitably engage muscles during vigorous workouts. This increases the risk of injury, which you certainly don’t want to happen. Not getting enough sleep will also compromise your natural energy levels, which can affect your physical and mental functions and overall performance.