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Articles Fitness Nutrition

Importance of after Exercise Recovery

Jul 29, 2010

Many people who underestimate the importance of after exercise recovery often do not have enough energy the next day. Getting the proper amount of nutrition and rest is essential in order to recover both mentally and physically from a strenuous workout. If you anticipate that you will not have enough time to fully recover after a particular exercise session, you may want to consider reducing the intensity of your workout to allow your body to heal.

Psychological Recovery

Some high-level athletes have a great deal of pressure placed on them to perform, which can take a toll on them psychologically. While you may not be an elite athlete, after exercising you still need to let your mind recover as well as your body. Whether you are a student or work for a living, it is important to know how much mental rest you need after a workout, so you can perform your tasks in an efficient manner the next day.

If you experience signs of depression or mental fatigue the day after a workout, you may be over-training. Take a few days off to let your body recharge, and then see how you feel the next time you exercise. If the problem persists, you may want to switch to a different type of exercise, or consult with a physician if necessary.

Physical Recovery

The type of exercise and duration of the workout will impact the amount of recovery time you need. For example, if you are a marathon runner, chances are you will need more time to recover than someone who only runs five miles during a training session. You will be able to tell approximately how much rest your body needs once you perform a certain exercise on a few different occasions.

After you finish a workout, you need to replenish lost fluids and eat a healthy meal to speed up your body’s recovery. How long you wait to eat after exercising is a matter of preference, so you may want to experiment with different time intervals, to see how your body reacts. For example, some athletes choose to consume a meal that contains a large quantity of protein right after they finish a weightlifting workout. If you are exercising to lose weight, you may want to wait a little longer to eat, so your body can burn off some existing energy stores during recovery.

If you do not allow your body to fully recover from a strenuous exercise session, you run the risk of injury if you repeat the same exercise too soon. The tissues in your muscle need time to heal after exercise breaks them down, so try to work a different muscle group if you do not fully recover from your previous workout. For example, if you work on your arms and back during a weightlifting session on Monday, exercise your legs on Tuesday, to give your arms and back more time to recover.

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