Summer is here, and like many others, we have busted our butts to try to get that “summer bod.” Sometimes putting in two-a-days and pushing our bodies to extremes hoping to reach our fitness goals in this short season. This might have lead to overtraining our bodies and not giving it the recovery needed, which often leads to lackluster results.
By overtraining, we are actually doing more harm than good. We all love the feeling of sore muscles after a workout, reminding us we put in work and got some ish done in the gym. But when you can barely walk up stairs, or even put one foot in front of the other… it becomes a problem.
Recovery is SUPER important because if you’re not recovering properly you won’t be able to get the most out of your workouts. If you’re always sore you can’t push as hard and you’ll feel low on energy which leads to half a$$ workouts. 😉 Also, if you’re not recovering enough, your muscles are constantly being broken down and don’t have the chance to get stronger. You get stronger during recovery, not during the workout.
I have gathered a list of common mistakes people make post-workout and what to do to fix them; along with other experts opinions so you can have all of the resources you need in one place to correct your recovery mistakes!
Common Recovery Mistakes and How to Fix Them
Newsflash- nobody’s perfect! We all make mistakes, and post-workout recovery is no exception. Here are some of the biggest mistakes and what you can do to fix them!
1. Not Keeping Enough Off-Time Between Workouts
(ie. doing leg work every day when you want to improve your legs)
Sometimes people can get in the mindset of “if I want my legs to be stronger/slimmer/whatever it may be, then I need to work them more.” They then find themselves working that body part every day. This is a classic case of overuse and could increase your risk for injury.
What experts say:
We love to turn to Kaytlin Neil when we need an expert’s opinion. And when it comes to recovery, Kaytlin just gets it:
“You can do full body workouts every day, but it will depend on the intensity of your workouts and how long you’re working out each muscle group. If you do 1-2 exercises per muscle group a day and do a full body workout, you should be okay to work out the same muscle group again the next day. If you’re just focusing on one or two muscle groups for each workout you should wait at least 24-48 hours before you workout that muscle group again so you don’t overwork it and get injured.”
What to do: Work different muscle groups different days of the week and switch up your workouts.
ex: Monday: Triceps and Shoulders
Tuesday: Legs and Butt
Thursday: Biceps, Back, and Abs
Friday: Cardio or Rest
Saturday: Full Body
2. Not Sleeping Enough
Believe it or not, sleep plays a huge role in your recovery! Exercise breaks down muscle and depletes energy levels. Getting in a good night’s sleep will help to increase energy resulting in better performance.
What experts say:
Jeff Kuhland, fitness professional and owner of Athletic Human talks about the importance sleep plays in recovery:
“Sleep is the most important time to recover. Adequate levels of sleep help to provide mental health, hormonal balance, and muscular recovery. You need to get enough sleep, which is between seven to ten hours for most athletes. Everyone has individual needs based on their lifestyle, workouts, and genetic makeup.”
What to do: Plan on getting anywhere from 7-10 hours of sleep at night. By sleeping longer you are able to get in more cycles of REM sleep so that you can get in the proper amount of sleep you need to help you feel refreshed and ready for a new day.
3. Not Using BCAAs
Adding BCAAs to your diet is such a great way to help you recover. BCAAs reduce muscle soreness and promote muscle building, helping you to make the most out of your recovery so that you are ready to get back into the gym, faster!
What experts say:
Kaytlin Neil also knows the importance of incorporating BCAAs into her diet:
“As a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and MMA fighter, I always need to stay on top of my game. When I’m preparing for fights, my body is getting beat up and my muscles are being torn down with every workout. I need IdealLean BCAAs to repair my muscles so that I can recover quickly and get back into the ring!”
What to do: Supplement BCAAs into your diet. My personal fav? IdealLean BCAAs. Not only are they delicious, but they are also formulated specifically with women in mind and contain 0 calories, sugar, and carbs.