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7 Tips For Recovery From Triathlon Training & Racing
1) Static stretching.
What is static stretching? This is when the stretch is held for a few seconds. Ideally, you should hold it for 20 seconds to a minute. It is important to do this at the end of your workout to maintain flexibility as muscles often tighten after exercise. Staying flexible can help you get faster in the long run because you can have a greater range of motion. Stretching can even prevent some pain.
It is also important to note that static stretching should be done at the end and not at the beginning of training because it relaxes the muscle and lengthens it to a point, and exercising on it can cause injury and is less likely to react as you want.
Oh yes, they feel good and help keep your muscles nice and relaxed. They are a great way to keep blood flowing to your legs which in turn will help you recover faster. Top professional athletes in many types of sports receive messages on a daily basis. To quote Napoleon Dynamite “LUCKY!”
3) Rides and/or swimming for recovery.
horseback riding and recovery swimming are great ways to aid recovery. In order for the joints to be flexible, we have to move. Why is this? The joints are not lubricated through the bloodstream, but through the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is not pumped through our body by the heart, but by human inertia or movement. This is why more and more doctors are telling people to move as much as possible when their back or other areas hurt.
Recovery runs and swimming also get the heart rate up. (It’s important to lower your heart rate during these exercises. Zone 1 is what you want.) This slight increase in heart rate will help pump a little more blood out of the muscles, so the theory goes that you’ll speed up your recovery. I have found that this seems to be effective for the athletes I coach.
Sleep rocks. This is when your mind and body have time to rest and recover, probably the most. This is also the time when your body releases a lot of human growth hormone. To maximize this, do not eat carbohydrates 2 hours before bed as this will prevent the body from releasing human growth hormone. Human growth hormone has been shown in many studies to play a major role in aiding recovery and muscle building.
How many hours of sleep you need varies from person to person. Michael Jordan slept only 3 hours a night during all his playing days. Most people need 7-9. Consistency is also key in sleep. Going to bed and getting up at the same time is beneficial for feeling the most energy when you get up.
YES MALA! I like to meditate. I do this almost every day. After one of these sessions I feel fresh and ready to go. It teaches you to let go and relax your mind. I find it better than napping because it makes me feel sharper.
5) raise your legs.
Elevating your legs after work can also help. I have used this tactic and find it works for me and the athletes I coach. The idea is to drain your legs. According to one of Joe Friels’ books, for every hour of training, keep them up for 5 minutes. So, 3 hours = 15 minutes of ascent.
lie flat on your back and keep it above the rest of your body. Leaning against a wall or stability ball works well.
6) Compression socks.
This is new, but I believe it has some advantages. I often notice after a hard day of training that my ankles and lower shins can look swollen and feel stiffer. Compression socks helped me with that. I save them after training.
I also use socks when I travel and this has helped reduce the swelling. I know some pros do this and I’m sure some of you triathletes have seen some people wearing those knee high socks in races. I have yet to break them in because I believe it will take me too long to put them on in transition and I want my feet to breathe.
The food is also great. There are many great resources on nutrition. The body needs all the proper nutrients to recover and recover effectively. Therefore, you should have a well-balanced diet. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables!
That’s all folks, much peace and love to you all
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