Lately I have been able to work on and develop my recovery protocols. They’ve become a huge part and success factor in not just my training but my overall life, providing emotional and even mental resets. This isn’t something that happened over night; believe it or not, it has take almost a full year of really sticking to these recovery protocols after every workout to see the maximum recovery results.
The great thing about these recovery tips is that they are not adding more things to your day. The trainers and programmers at SOFLETE are simply helping you create more time in you day with better workout results and a better recovery. Wondering why this is? Think about how fast you are going from when you wake up to when you go to bed. At times it seems like you don’t even remember what you did that morning! Now that isn’t a good thing.
How are you supposed to keep evolving as a human being if you are in overdrive all the time?
As we work to create a regular routine into your daily life, we need to make it become something that is fun and not a burden to you. The 5 workout recovery protocols that I am about to list off are things that are fun and challenging to a degree, but they are all a part of teaching you to slow down, take time for yourself to reset, and keep getting after your day.
I don’t do all of these recovery tips in one day. When I started I would just use one and focus on it for about 2 weeks then switch it up.
As time went on, however, I noticed that I was pairing the routines together, and started to see all the extra time in my life I was creating. I noticed that the need for busy work, which I thought was productive was just taking up time that was doing more harm than good. By taking a few minutes to focus and clear my head, I I was calmer and more present then I had ever been in my life.
5 Recovery Protocols Tips and Suggestions
1. Slow Down and Breathe. This can be as simple as waking up and laying in bed for 2-5 mins. Start taking slow inhales and long exhales. Try your best to focus on just the inhale and exhale. This should help quiet the mind for a bit. This can also be done before bed, and as you get better with it, you will be able to do it longer and random places.
2. Movement is Movement. Look to create some kind of movement on a daily basis. This can be as simple as doing a few air squats, push ups, sit ups, burpees, lunges. Not fast! Just easy movement. Pick one movement and just move for like 2-5 mins, slow and controlled movements. This can be done at your desk, during lunch or anywhere.
3. Naps don’t mean you are lazy. Taking an 25-30 min nap is more powerful than you realize. Naps help promote alertness and increase brain function. I know, this is one of the hard recovery protocols to follow. It took me a while to get this down. I don’t nap every day, but it is a routine that I look forward to if I can get it in for the day. If you are going to nap, look to do it between 1-3pm or right as the sun is setting and start of dusk, but again no more than a 25-30 min nap.
4. Contrast Showers are amazing. What’s a contrast shower? Alternating hot and cold. This is what lead me to learning about cold/heat exposure work that has become something I do everyday. Taking a contrast shower is one of the most simple routines to start cause you do it often 1-2 times a day. Start out with 1-3 mins in the cold shower and learn to just control your actions and emotions while in the cold water. Once you have done that then go the the warm water. Try doing cold showers in the morning and then warm showers at night before bed.
5. Shutting down before bed. This is a new one that I have really been practicing and it has been amazing. I recently started experimenting with my sleep. I started looking at sleep in cycles of 90 min cycles and I wanted no less than 3 cycles a night, roughly 4.5 hours, and no more than 5 cycles a night, or 7.5 hours. I found what has been working for me best is 4 cycles or 6 hours of sleep. The key to getting the best quality of sleep was my pre-bed routine. I started by simply shutting down everything 30 mins before bed then increased it to 60 mins after a while. During that 30 mins I would cut out all lights, light some candles, write everything down that was in my head for the next day, then shower and get myself ready for bed with some breathing work. When this worked, I extended it to 60 minutes before bed. I would do some movement work or read a book, then I would follow the same things as stated above. This is now a recovery protocol I do every night. And if I don’t I can tell the difference throughout the day.
As always, I will challenge all of you reading this to pick one of the routines from above and start doing it once a day and see what comes of it. Pick one, and then tell me about it in a comment below or on Facebook. We at SOFLETE want to hear from you, and your feedback and success stories are invaluable to us. Tell us how these recovery protocols have improved your life.
As you progress, look to add in other routines that you feel you want for that day. Again the goal is longevity, do something simple yet effective to help you become 1% better than you were yesterday.