With the Six Nations being on this weekend, the UK has come together to support their teams as they go into battle. It is known by all who know the game that Rugby, especially the Six Nations is one of the toughest competitions on earth, with athletes putting their bodies on the line and pushing themselves to new limits, all in the name of their nation.
With the hard work and dedication put in, there needs to be plans put in place to make sure each player recovers fully, without picking up any injuries. With the demanding nature of recovery in sport, we thought we would look to the Six Nations teams to get inspiration for our recovery after strenuous training sessions.
If you’re looking to further your recovery and truly get the most from the time that you put into the gym, there are a number of things that you can do, so here are 4 top things that the Six Nations teams will incorporate into their recovery to rehabilitate after a weekend of strenuous work.
After a workout, it is very important to replace the fluids that you have lost during exercise. Aim to drink around two litres of water per day, and more if you have been sweating due to strenuous exercise.
Hydration isn’t just key to helping your muscles repair, but it also gives benefits such as keeping your skin clear and helping you feel more awake when you need it most.
A lot of people warm up before working out, but many forget to cool down at the end of their workout, especially if they have been focusing on a weight based workout.
Stretching after a workout allows the body to reduce the amount of lactic acid in the muscles and also improves the blood circulation in the worked muscles. Doing this may seem like an extra step to take, but stretching out after a workout is actually essential to make sure that you don’t have any problems in the future.
For some people, getting a Sports Massage may have previously been out of the picture, with them sometimes being perceived as something reserved for the professionals and athletes. Although, getting a Sports Massage allows you to relieve stress in the muscles, improves circulation and also prevents you from getting any knots or muscle problems developing.
Many people who commit to a 3-5 day training week eat well after their workouts but don’t really pack in the healthy calories when the weekend comes around, as they aren’t training and don’t see the need to do so.
Although, as the professionals such as Mark Shaw show, recovery over the weekend can be optimised by creating a meal plan that allows you to track how many, and what type of calories you are consuming. The weekend is a good time to pack in the extra calories and protein, as the body is in its full recovery mode, so it can use all of the nutrients it can get to help muscles, joints, and bones recover; being why the body recovers faster when it is packed with healthy carbs, proteins, and fats.
If you don’t have the time or prior knowledge to know the right things to put into your body, there is the option to go to a fitness expert who has Sports Nutrition qualification, as they will have the skills and knowledge to tailor meal plans that suit your progression and goals, and they will even be able to tailor weekend specific cheat days to make sure you eat well whilst still getting the things you love.
Overall, there are various steps that you can take to further your recovery, and the best approach is to try and test each step, and find which ones work best for you. It goes without saying that these tips may not be for everyone, so it is a case of finding an approach to recovery that suits you, your lifestyle, and your personal Training goals and adapting them into your routine in a way that brings the best results.