A woman drinking water after a workout.

Top 4 Ways to Recover from a Workout

When it comes to reaching fitness goals and improving performance, what you do after a workout is just as important as what you do during the workout.

It’s vital for your body recover after a workout and there are several simple ways for you to help promote, improve and hasten the recovery process. It includes what you put in your body, what you put on your body and what you do to your body.

4 Post-Workout Recovery Ideas to Add to Your Routine

  • 1


    Adding massage to a post-workout routine promotes faster muscle recovery. There are four popular and effective types of sports massage:

    Effleurage massage

    Petrissage massage

    Tapotement massage

    Friction massage

  • 2


    Protein sources following workouts help rebuild muscle tissue and fuel the function of various cells, tissues and enzymes. Carbohydrates are vital, as well, for providing a source of energy for muscles. Eating the right post-workout meal helps your body recover, replenish and repair, potentially reducing muscle soreness and fatigue. Many serious athletes drink protein shakes shortly after workouts but for others, a sensible, easily-digestible meal that is high in proteins will work.

  • 3

    Recovery workouts

    Sometimes called active recovery, these lower-intensity workouts increase circulation, which aids recovery time. These light workouts include stretching, swimming, walking and light jogging. Isometrics, massage and yoga are ideal. A foam roller, rolled-up yoga mat or rolled-up towel help with many recovery workout stretches, twists and crunches. Experts agree that at least one day per week should be devoted to recovery workouts.

  • 4


    Not staying hydrated is a common mistake, particularly for busy folks squeezing in workouts between work and family commitments. Dehydration reduces performance potential and increases the likelihood of post-workout muscle pain and excruciating muscle cramps, all of which add to recovery time. Drinking water (and approved sports drinks) promotes tissue healing and even your metabolism rate. While there’s no set rule on how much water you should drink on workout days, a starting point for many is taking half of your body weight and converting it to ounces. Hydration does not include alcoholic beverages. Excessive intake of alcohol, particularly immediately after workouts, inhibits the body’s ability to properly recover.

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