Regeneration and Recovery cont…
However regeneration and recovery methods do aid us day to day as well to get through busy lives and some form of daily and weekly regeneration is advisable to all. What that is varies and is personal. A weekly massage could be of great benefit. A daily 20 minute walk in nature is one of the healthiest habits anyone could pick up.
I personally have a 10-20 lie down in the gym in the middle of the day blacking out my eyes to chill out. It’s not meditation because I actually do not think at all, made all the easier by the rustle of trees outside. Often I will nod off. And then go for a 10-15 minute walk. Then I will also use a fasted long hilly walk at least once a week. That’s 12-16 hours without food. Pretty easily done including overnight sleep. There are many arguments made for and against fasting, particularly for fat loss. But that’s not what I do it for. The effect it has is pronounced and very noticeable when I do not get a chance to do it. Whatever it is for you, have something daily and have something more significant weekly. Those are just personal examples.
Another important part is within your day you need to eat enough carbs, fats and proteins. Too many diets these days are extreme. Your brain needs about 300 kcals a day per KG to function well. Brain weighs about 1.2 - 1.5 KG so this is quite a bit of our daily intake. If you do not feed your brain, just like resting it, you will suffer and no recovery methods work.
In Part 9 we will look a little a some more athlete specific recovery training.
I have 2 forms of regeneration and recovery I like to employ with people. They are nearly always easy to administer and people can do them themselves without going to a gym or too much equipment. It certainly does not need 250 euro at a Spa. That’s not to say paying for some treatments do not have great value sometimes, but be choosy.
Essentially start with these 3 must-do’s;
There is a difference between regeneration and active recovery, and we use both. Active recovery is about increasing blood flow whereas regeneration is about settling down the nervous system. In modern life that is absolutely critical to basic survival and avoidance of sickness and disease.
The one thing to underpin all regeneration and recovery is sleep. If you are not getting enough sleep then pretty much everything else is a waste of time. If your sleep is not right all the massaging, foam rolling, sea swims, yoga and other therapies in the world do not matter a dam. I am a long way from a sleep expert and indeed it’s a constant battle for myself due to unusual working hours. Building habits and processes around my sleep is my major health and fitness goal at the moment, so I do realize it’s not always easy. But when I get it right I notice the difference significantly. There is also a lot of recent and ongoing research into sleep that without pointing out the obvious is telling us sleep is even more important than we ever realized. Poor sleep patterns are linked to all sorts of disease and indeed our mortality.
So sleep first.
In Part 8 we will look a little a some more specific regeneration and recovery methods.
Clients with an average fitness level should complete 6-12 week training blocks. We Alternate between high and low intensities and gradually increase intensity over time while reducing the volume.
Training guidelines for someone with average fitness include: - 45-75 minutes per session
(longer side of this scale is generally athletes, private clients is more set in stone at 30/45/60) - 4-6 sessions/week
Alternate between high- and low-intensity days 2-3 days of high intensity .We will fully monitor the volume of higher intensity work to avoid overtraining.
This group are usually more the amateur athlete or weekend warrior types.
When training clients with high fitness levels, use 10-12 week training blocks. Incorporate both high- and low-intensities into their training. We use the following training guidelines for clients with high fitness levels: - 60-90 minutes per session - 4-6 sessions per week (some of these will be double sessions and worked in and around sports if an athlete)3 days of high intensity, spaced out during the week. This group is almost always athletes. And much of their high intensity training is on the field. So a lot of the time these days I will get them to lift heavy after field training. This means we get to have high and low days rather than more than 2 or 3 high days.
With both average and high fitness levels many sessions will be 2 in 1 sessions. Depending on the goals these will concentrate on one primary element of fitness first and a secondary goal 2nd. Which way these are and how we load them depend on the sport, position, goals, athletes age and experience, time of season etc
In Part 7 of the series we will discuss briefly some recovery and regeneration methods that may be of use to anyone.
We program for health and wellness we have to begin with sorting clients in terms of their overall fitness levels. This process helps us understand the approach for each person.
Then we use the assessment to categorize clients as having good fitness, medium fitness, or low fitness.
For people with low levels of fitness, we use 4-6 week training blocks and low-to-moderate intensity. Gradually we increase the volume throughout the training program to improve work capacity. Most things work at this point, so a concurrent approach works best.
30-45 minutes per training session
2-4 sessions per week
Low-to-moderate intensity; no more than 1 high-intensity day/week
We use various methods to build a resistance to what may come down the road. It’s the “Train to train” phase common in all good early season sports programs. Remember it’s still humans we are dealing with, a layered up approach no matter what level is needed.
So we stress at an appropriate level, recover, adapt.
People will often report feeling their back and various other parts of the body. This really is an awakening. People often come to us already having tried many methods, often very passive treatments, but eventually got nowhere. Sometimes professionals put fear into people and they get Uber conscience of their body. Then because they are “feeling” it a few days after training they believe they may be doing damage. But 99% of the time they are just using it. And it’s simply not used to it. This is one of our biggest challenges, getting people to relax and realize that this is all beneficial.
In part 6 we will talk a little bit about people who are of average or high fitness levels and what our approach to condition is with them.