For most people, two things exist: 1. A hard training session and 2. An off day. Most programs are constructed to reflect that. But for some people — those addicted to the iron — the very idea of physically taking a day off can be a lot harder, mentally. They think their muscles will shrink or suddenly get hidden by a layer of fat if they’re not in the gym going all-out, all the time. However, while the growth response is initiated through training, the magic actually happens afterwards during the eating, sleeping, and recovering.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
Every stress response needs a de-stress response which leads to performance, progress and gains.
LOCALISED RECOVERY: This means the muscles you worked during training go through the process of repair in relation to the amount of stress that you placed on them. The harder the work and the greater the volume, the longer the localised recovery process will take. However, you CAN and SHOULD train a muscle when it’s sore — one of the best ways to speed up recovery from delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is to push some blood into the area.
SYSTEMIC RECOVERY: Your nervous system doesn’t live in a training vacuum. Everything outside of training has an effect on how taxed or recovered you are including nutrition, sleep and even the amount of intimate physical contact you have. If you’re leading a super stressful lifestyle where you’re always in fight or flight mode, then there’s no chance you’re going to be able to rest or digest. Forget just muscle soreness, you’ll be exhausted in both body and mind.
HOW TO TRAIN SMART NOT HARD
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