In this day and age when people lead very busy lives, a lot of people will simply grab a workout whenever they can, and therefore they don’t have done to prepare properly before a workout or replenish and refuel their bodies after their workout.
So in this article I thought I would discuss 5 things you should consider doing after a workout in order to recharge your body and get the maximum out of every single workout tha you do.
1. Stretching / Cooling Down Exercises
A lot of people will take a rest for a minute or two, grab a quick shower and head home after a gruelling session in the gym, but this is not an effective cooling down routine at all. Instead you should be doing a few stretches in order to loosen a few tight muscles, prevent injuries and reduce any post-workout soreness. It’s also a good idea to do some light cardio work on an exercise bike or a rowing machine, for example, in order to bring your body temperature (and your heart rate) back down.
2. Drink Some Water
Unless you have done a very gentle workout, you will inevitably have lost quite a lot of sweat during your workout. So it’s obviously important that you replace some of this lost fluid by drinking plenty of water after you have finished (and ideally during your workout as well). Even if you don’t feel particularly thirsty, there’s still a chance you could get dehydrated later on in the day if you don’t drink enough at this point.
3. Eat Some Protein
Some people like to take a number of different supplements immediately afterwards, such as glutamine, for example, which has been shown to speed up the recovery process, but at the very least you should eat a meal or snack that contains plenty of protein, or simply take a protein shake, which can be just as effective at repairing your muscles and promoting muscle growth. It’s also a good idea to consume a few carbs at this point in order to give yourself an energy boost and replace the glyocen that you lost during your workout.
4. Track Your Progress
This isn’t necessarily a vital component of your post-workout routine if you have a particularly good memory, but it is nevertheless a good idea to make a note of every single exercise that you perform, including the amount of weight you are lifting for each exercise, and the resistance level, distance covered or time taken if it is a cardio exercise. This will help you remember your routine the next time you do this workout, and if there are one or two exercises that have become too easy, you can make a note to increase the resistance for your next session.
Finally, it’s very important to rest your muscles and allow them to recover after you have finished your workout. So you definitely don’t want to repeat the same exercises the following day because it’s always a good idea to leave at least 48 hours between exercises in order to aid recovery and promote muscle growth. That’s why bodybuilders will often work a specific muscle group on certain days instead of working the same muscles every single day.