Rest Day: Workout Recovery Tips For Maximizing Your Gains
You spend several hours daily at the gym with the goal of chiseling out your ideal physique. Maybe it’s gaining washboard abs, building a back like a cobra or arms that look like gnarled wood. Whatever your fitness goals are, you have to be willing to put a great deal of time and energy into getting there. You put all that work in each day, weights, cardio, putting several small, healthy meals together to fuel your muscles without putting on fat.
But all that hard work could be going to waste if you don’t utilize your supplements properly. When you work out and push your muscles to their limits, the body will naturally start to break down and DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) can take over, leaving you hobbled and weak from your now broken down muscles.
Some ways to maximize your workout recovery are pretty basic. Stick to lean protein before your workouts - at least two hours before - and avoid the complex carbohydrates. Stretching can help you avoid injuries and loosen up those muscles before a strenuous workout. And, of course, keep yourself hydrated, whether it be with from a pre-workout intake of BCAAs, Gatorade or just water.
Also, don’t try to be a hero. Just because you can lift very heavy weights, doesn’t mean you should all of the time. Pushing your body is great but push it too much and you’re just hurting yourself in the end. So stop pretending you’re competing at the Olympics to break the all-time ‘Clean and Jerk’ world record.
It may seem like a silly thing, but getting proper sleep is always essential for your body, which needs recovery time after a workout to repair itself. Without proper rest, you won’t be as sharp and motivated to push yourself. Rest days in between workouts are important too, but try and get some light exercise in if you’re taking a day off. Go for a walk or a swim, something that isn’t strenuous but keeps your body moving.
Supplement wise, there are many good choices to help your muscles recover from those strenuous workouts and to repair the damage that working out does on your body. BCAAs, especially when taken before or during a workout, help your muscles achieve maximum absorption, helping to prevent protein breakdown and increasing synthesis to speed up recovery. For post-workout supplements, proteins are really the best choice. Proteins are the fuel for your muscles’ fire and they are essential to muscle growth, so it’s easy to see why they’re so important.
With that in mind, here are some products that can help you recover faster and make the most of your workouts:
Myokem's mTor Pro: A premium, all-inclusive branched-chain amino (BCAA) and essential amino acid (EAA) supplement with a great taste from one the highest quality supplement makers on the market. BCAA supplements are designed to maintain muscle tissue, while EAAs assist in cell and tissue repair. Together, these amino acids provide all-around benefits aimed at recovery and repairing muscle tissue. mTOR PRO™ is the only current supplement to include a patented time-released form of leucine known as ActiveTR,™ which releases an extra 3 grams of leucine three hours after drinking. This gives you an additional dose of Leucine thus maximizing muscle protein synthesis and your results.
Optimum Nutrition Glutamine: After a strenuous workout, it can take your body several hours to replace the much-needed glutamine that is lost. L-Glutamine helps to ease muscle soreness after your workout while rebuilding damaged tissue.
Blue Star GH Peak: Natural growth hormone (GH) production occurs during sleep, so you’re literally building muscle as you drift off into dreamland. GH Peak maximizes that GH production and is designed for optimal sleep, with Melatonin added to support proper rest.
Twin Labs Melatonin: Found naturally in the body, melatonin has a vast wealth of health benefits, but it’s mainly used as a sleep aid to promote a more consistent internal clock and a deeper state of rest. Getting enough sleep, most experts agree that 7 hours per night is the sweet spot, is essential for optimal muscle growth and repair. Let’s face it, if you’re dragging around all day, odds are when you get to the gym or your weight room, that sluggishness will translate into poor workouts.
Optimum Nutrition Whey Protein: Protein is essential to building muscle and fueling your drive. Optimum Nutrition’s Whey Protein is one of the most popular and consistent forms of protein available today, offering up 5.5 grams of BCAAs and 24 grams of protein per serving to support muscle recovery and growth. It’s also designed for quick, easy absorption so you know your muscles are getting the fuel they need.