While I’m hanging out here on the foam roller I thought I’d write a bit about recovery and see what everyone is doing to help themselves do it ( recover) better.
The most important things with regards to recovery are food, sleep, and hormones which are also related to food. The least important things with regards to recovery are foam rolling, stretching, and a ‘cool down’ period.
Don’t get me wrong, people would likely be better off to incorporate soft tissue myofascial treatments, mobility work, and a cool down period on a rower or airdyne, but all of this pales in comparison to your sleep and nutrition to really recover from training.
To get your recovery going, add quality carbohydrates in the meals preceding and following training from things like rice, oats, etc. Also, think about having a dedicated post workout shake of protein powder isolate and waxy maize in a ratio of 1:3 protein to carbs.
For sleep, try eliminating ambient lighting from electronic appliances, digital clocks, etc. This style of lighting disrupts some hormonal activities pertaining to deep sleep cycles. Additionally supplements like magnesium or zinc and magnesium combined (ZMA) can help in addition to melatonin, valerian root, and similar. Additionally, make sure your room is cool, temperature wise, as this has been shown to make a difference in sleep quality.
By improving the quality of the nutrition and sleep we can maximize your gains from training and potentially improve your hormonal profile too. Let us know when you implement this and what your results are.