5 Mistakes Athletes Make That Slow Down Their Recovery

We all know that athletes put their bodies through a lot. Whether it’s the physical toll of training or the mental stress of competition, they need to be careful not to push themselves too hard. When you’re an athlete, there are certain mistakes you can make that will slow down your recovery time after working out or performing in a game. Here are 5 things you should avoid if you want to get back on track as quickly as possible!

  1. Inadequate Sleep

In a world with fewer and fewer hours in the day, sometimes it’s difficult to find time for sleep. However, you need eight hours of rest if you want to be able to function at full capacity during training or work. Although most people may not realize this when they’re only getting three or four hours per night, their body is working against them- even though they might appear okay on the outside! Non-REM sleep (deep sleep) is when your body actually benefits from the healing properties of sleep. Benefits include:

  • Your blood pressure will decrease
  • Your breathing will become deeper and slower
  • Your brain will be resting with very little activity throughout this period
  • This enables for a larger blood flow to your muscles and, as a result, more oxygen and nutrients to be delivered.
  • Your body also produces a dose of growth hormone at this moment, which drives tissue development and muscle regeneration.
  1. Lack Of Proper Nutrition

Eating a balanced diet is critical in order to stay healthy and fuel your body for training. It’s also important because it allows you to recover from exercise more completely, so neglecting this part of the healing process might have detrimental effects on your performance level and general well-being. Tiredness can increase along with decreased performance levels, restricting progress during training sessions, increased muscular soreness; all these hazards may prevent us from reaching our maximum potential which leads to a downward spiral quickly if we don’t stick to good eating habits.

Appropriate nutrition during recovery has its advantages:

  • It should promote muscle repair and development
  • Improves adaption to the activity
  • Refuels and hydrates your body
  • Supports immunological function.

There is no one-size-fits-all solution to how this should be done; everyone has distinct nutritional demands and limits, which change depending on characteristics such as gender, weight, activity level, and so on. However, it is advised that you eat a rich supply of carbs to refill muscle fuel stores, a lean amount of protein to promote muscle repair, and a source of fluid and electrolytes to rehydrate in the hours after your workout.

  1. Skipping Post-workout Stretches

Think of a time when you didn’t want to do something but knew it was good for you. How did your body feel after? Just like with other things in life, if we don’t take the time to stretch our muscles they become tight and uncomfortable – causing us pain or injury down the line! So even though stretching may not be a top priority right now post-workout, just try and fit them into your schedule while taking care of yourself.

Many athletes complete their workout without doing any stretches which can cause long-term problems such as injuries. When people are done working out all that’s going through their mind is food or resting; however, this should always come second place because what comes first is getting stretched. Here’s why:

  • Taking the time to properly cool down and stretch weary muscles minimizes muscular tension and saves you a lot of discomfort in the long run.
  • During strenuous activity, the body pumps blood to the heart at a higher rate.
  • Stretching not only allows you to decrease your pulse rate but also promotes muscle healing by stimulating blood circulation and breaking the release of lactic acid.
  1. Too Much Coffee

If you want to exercise first thing in the morning, avoid coffee. Coffee is a physical stressor and when our bodies feel stressed, cortisol is released. While moderate amounts of cortisol are necessary for survival it can have severe health consequences if too much accumulates including weight gain which will be harmful to your goal of losing fat or modifying your body composition.

You may, however, take a cup of coffee before your workout as a natural pre-workout without the same dangers. Caffeine, in fact, has been found to increase performance, motivation, and muscular pain in studies.

  1. Too Much Training

As we train more and push ourselves to our physical limits, it’s important that we take the time to rest. It takes diligence on your body’s end as well as knowing when you’re at a peak level of performance in order for training goals such as skill development or improvement to reach their full potential.

It’s important to know that if you’re not careful, there are a few things athletes do that can slow down their recovery. These practices may actually make the pain worse in the long run! If you want more information about how best to recover as an athlete, call us today! We’ll be happy to answer all your questions and help provide expert advice so that you feel better sooner than later.

Are You Looking for Relief for Your Sports Injury?

Pace Physical Therapy in San Jose, California specializes in non-surgical relief and recovery therapies for Sports Injuries.  Our physical therapists in San Jose, CA are movement professionals who can help you heal easily and accomplish your physical goals. To get back into the game as soon as possible after an injury, they will recommend a personalized treatment plan for you based on medical examination results (such as X-rays), diagnostic tests (MRI or ultrasound), the severity of the injury, the extent of health issues/concerns to consider when developing this plan, lifestyle considerations that may impact recovery progress. To help you heal faster, at Pace Physical Therapy San Jose, CA appointments are available to aid in the recovery of your sports injury. Our staff is experienced and professional with years of training on how best to treat various types of injuries among athletes so that they’re able to return back into their sport as soon as possible. We strive every day to provide excellent service for all our patients because we understand it can be frustrating not being able to do what you love most due to an injury keeping us off the field or court! Contact us today to schedule your appointment!