Well, even though it is my birthday, I thought I would do a post for you guys, this time.... on recovery.

I will mainly aim this post on weight training, as it is the most popular type of training I see and hear about. Weight training has two parts to it - the training, and the recovery, both as important as the other. When your in the gym, 'pumping iron', you are actually breaking your muscle tissue down, causing microscopic tears, which in turn get repaired. So, when lifting the weights, you're not getting bigger or stronger there, your simply tearing your muscles. This is where recovery comes in.

Your body will heal itself on its own, eventually, but when your in training, and working out 3-4 times per week, you need to recover quicker. My recent post on 'post workout nutrition' is what is key here. You need to refuel your system with energy and protein. Protein is what repairs the muscle tissue that you tore in the gym, and carbs replenish energy stores. But, what most people don't tend to do, is listen to their body, and that's a grave error. A lot of people train before they have fully recovered, which can lead to a poor workout, but worse - injury. After a heavy gym session, your body needs rest as well as recovery. You need to ensure you get plenty of sleep and relax your muscles. Ice baths can help but are not always accessible, but I have known weight trainers to use sauna's, jacuzzi's and steam rooms and have claimed they help. Last of all, you need the right nutrition. As stated in my recent post, you need a good hit of protein and carbs post workout, with a daily diet consisting of lots of fruit and veg, protein, carbs and healthy fats. If you recover like this, you will notice a difference in how you feel within 24-48 hours after your workout.

Train smart, eat smart!

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