Here are four recovery-enhancing tips that are indispensable.
- Don’t forget your Micros
If you are reading this you are probably familiar with macronutrients: protein, fat, and carbohydrates, including fiber. Obviously its important to hit your Macro nutrients targets but its important not to forget your Micros.
While you may have initial success on any macronutrient-controlled diet, studies have shown that simply improving the quality of your food—with no changes in quantity—leads to an improvement in body composition.
Put more simply, choosing high-quality, nutrient-dense foods over their lower-quality, junk-food counterparts leads to better body composition, even when the macronutrients are the same! Traditional bodybuilding staples like chicken breast, broccoli, green beans, and fish are all micronutrient-dense foods.
- Optimise Carb Intake Before Workouts
Training fatigue is directly dependent on the amount of glycogen already present in your muscles when you start working out, meaning the less glycogen you start with, the faster you will fatigue. This is why it makes sense to consume carbohydrates before you train to increase your glycogen stores.
- Prioritise Digestive Health
Immunogenic foods (substances that produce an allergic response) include such staples as corn, soy, dairy, and gluten. Although only a small percentage of the population are allergic to these foods, a larger portion may simply be sensitive to them, which could in turn contribute to minor inflammatory GI issues.
Since immunogenic foods do not offer a direct muscle-building advantage, there is no harm in removing one or all of them from your diet.
By eliminating potential inflammation-causing foods from your diet and feeding your body gut-friendly foods such as coconut oil, leafy green vegetables, herbs, garlic, and probiotics, you can begin to reduce your digestive stress, which will in turn improve your recovery, your performance, and your aesthetics.
- Sleep Like It’s Your Job
From overconsuming caffeine to staying up late staring at a screen to not optimizing sleep environments, many of us experience poor sleep. While lack of sleep may not seem like a big deal, there are significant hormonal consequences after missing even one night of sleep.
In addition to the elevated health risks these hormonal disturbances may cause, lack of sleep significantly impairs your body’s ability to recover, putting you at risk for overtraining.
If you want faster recovery and better athletic performance, make quality sleep a priority. Limit your exposure to blue light at night, supplement with relaxation-promoting nutrients such as magnesium, and create a cool, dark environment to sleep in.