Active recovery. Most athletes think they are done when the workout is over. WRONG. In reality the most important part of your workout is the active recovery you take after you finish your workout. This is something that is completely over-looked by many and without it you only short change yourself for future workouts and training. This active recovery can also help prevent injuries.
Now I completely understand that there are times when you just want to be done. Take today for example. Trained in the AM and was less than motivated to train this afternoon. Today is an example of a day I might have just finished the workout and headed straight home. However I knew that by short changing today’s complete plan I only set tomorrow up for a sub par performance. What is my typical active recovery following a workout:
After finishing my run, I headed straight to the gym for come core strengthening, TRX exercises, single leg squats, lunges, planks, and lots of stretching.
I followed that with some power plate stretches and then spent 15 minutes using the foam roller to work on what I call “poor athletes massage”. After that I headed home but not without stopping at the gas station for the best $1.79 any athlete could spend. A bag of ice! Which was used in creating an ice bath. 1 bath tub filled with cool water + 1 bag ice = awesome way to cut inflammation and speed up healing.
If you want to enhance your performance, you can not over-look taking care of your body. The excuse of “I don’t have time” is ridiculous. If you have time to dedicate yourself to training, you simply don’t have time to NOT take the time to recover. I see to many runners and athletes injured because they don’t take the time to take care of themselves. Cut your run 10 minutes short and give yourself that 10 minutes to take care of the muscles, joints, and connective tissue that you ask so much of while out training.