Its festival season and the sun is almost as high as the humidity. The days are longer and the sidewalks are treacherous terrain for bare feet. Beach trips have been planned, diets have been started, and early morning cardio sessions are under way. In the hustle and bustle of preparing those summer bodies we can often forget how important it is to slow down and take some time to recover. Trust me, I realize that it doesn’t seem like stretching and getting a good night’s sleep can get you closer to the chiseled abs you’ve been working for, but recovery is essential and often, unfortunately, overlooked.
So many of us are in the gym ramping up the intensity of our workouts so we can look great in those beach trip photos. Every day I see people upping the resistance on the elliptical or adding more weight to the barbells, pushing their bodies to the limits. Then their workouts end, they wipe the sweat from their heads and the machines, pack up their gym bag, grab a smoothie, and wave goodbye. There is nothing wrong with this at all. We all love to workout hard and wake up the next day sore from our efforts. It’s almost our reward for working so hard. It makes us feel proud. But at this point a very important step is often skipped. Slow down and recover! Stretching and foam rolling are great for helping to get the blood that carries those nutrients for recovery to our aching muscles! Take a yoga class! Not only are they great for stretching, but they help your body and mind relax through breathing. Even if it’s just once or twice a week, the benefits of giving your body a chance to recover can be felt instantly. Check our schedule for a list of classes! Want to stretch but don’t know where to start? Try our stretching class with Josh on Fridays at 10a.m.
On top of actively recovering it is also important to get good quality sleep. Try turning of electronics 30 minutes before bed. Give yourself some time to breathe and stretch before you hit the hay and I promise you will wake up refreshed and ready to hit the gym. Your six pack will thank you!