Updated: Aug 21, 2020
Everybody has a different reason for why they work out...
To build health & prevent being reliant on others as they age.
To lose unwanted fat and feel confident in a bikini.
To build a muscle and develop the confidence to talk to girls.
Become fitter and keep up with their kids.
To exercise for mental health and to FEEL amazing!
Whatever your reason is… We can all agree that we don’t train to feel overly sore, tired and fatigued.
Whilst you shouldn’t be training in the hopes that you feel sore, sometimes a little tenderness is to be expected and can’t always be avoided. Fortunately for us, there are a few steps you can make to ensure you give your body the best chance to recover optimally.
Little hint… it’s to do with the food you’re consuming!
If you’re sick of feeling overly sore, tired and lethargic then there are 3 important things you should be prioritizing when it comes to eating to optimise your recovery.
Protein helps our body repair and build muscle, this is why it’s known as the building block of the muscle! If you aren’t consuming adequate protein (we recommend roughly 2g per kilogram of bodyweight) then your body will not be able to sustain the reparation and will take protein from your muscle tissue as fuel for other bodily functions which leads to a decrease in lean muscle mass along with a decrease in your strength (yikes!). So figure out what your protein target is and start to hit it daily!
The next nutrient to focus on is:
Carbohydrates are broken down into glucose which is what our brain and body uses as its main source of fuel! When we workout, our muscles uses stored glycogen for energy which then needs to be replaced if we are wanting our muscles to perform. This is why pre and post workout carbohydrates can be useful. Consuming carbohydrates before you exercise will deliver the glycogen your body needs to power through that session, whereas post workout carbohydrates (paired with protein) is going to replenish those glycogen stores, reduce cortisol and begin the restoration and recovery process. Carbohydrates have received a bad reputation in the past, but if you are looking to feel good not only during your workout but afterwards too, ensuring you get a good dose of these bad boys is important!
Finally, one of the most important nutrients for recovery is:
This is probably the most underrated yet most important key to improving recovery!
Exercise uses water throughout the body, which can leave you depleted and dehydrated. It’s important to not only replenish any lost fluid, but ensure you are hydrated throughout the day. Without staying hydrated, your muscles won’t have the necessary electrolytes required to function optimally! Consuming water also helps the body flush toxins, which can help speed up the recovery process. We suggest drinking an additional 1L for every hour of exercise you do.
Water is also a key nutrient when looking at the makeup of synovial fluid, which is the fluid that surrounds our joints. If you aren’t drinking enough water, you won’t have enough of that protective fluid around your joints which can lead to prolonged feelings of soreness or worse, risk of injury. By drinking enough water, you’re ensuring that you keep your joints lubricated and prepped for exercise!
At the end of the day what you put in your mouth has a serious impact on how you feel, recover and perform in the gym. The faster you start paying attention to what you’re eating the better you’ll start to feel and perform, which in turn gets you the results you’re chasing faster!