Josef Brandenburg is a Washington D.C. personal trainer and owner of The Body You Want in Georgetown.
It’s a couple of weeks into the New Year and lots of people have made it to the gym for their New Year’s resolutions. That also means that people tend to overdo it at first and end up getting injured or are too sore to work out even before they can really start. Thus it is essential to be wise about workouts and recovery. Here are some strategies:
- Less is more. You don’t have to work out every day to see results. If you are not used to working out, then you need to let your body adjust to your new fitness routine and rebuild muscle. At The Body You Want (TBYW), we recommend doing no more than two strength program workouts in a row. They can be broken up by a day of intervals or rest.
- Post workout shake. I cannot emphasize this enough! A good protein shake within an hour of your workout will help immensely to reduce soreness. Protein shakes deliver the building blocks your body needs to build muscle. Look to get 25-30 grams of protein in your shake. Also, read the labels carefully—most protein powder out there is filled with lots of crap. The less ingredients the better. We recommend whey protein; our coaches drink True Whey and Jay Robb’s Whey Protein. You can also get creative with your protein shake flavors by adding a splash of coconut milk, cinnamon, or coffee to a vanilla shake.
- Sleep. Sleep makes it to my Fit-Tips for many reasons. Sleep is essential to allow your body to rest, recover, and rebuild muscle. It also regulates a lot of your hormones that allow your recovery to be efficient.
- Foam roll. We start all of our workouts at TBYW by foam rolling. It’s better than “warming up” by running on the treadmill because it increases blood flow to your muscles and “irons-out” your muscle fibers that tend to be balled up like rubber bands. After a particularly tough workout, I like to foam roll again; here’s a how to video (also, a great throwback of my younger years, and I’m wearing an awesome shirt).
So when it comes to working out, be smart about your recovery. Schedule your workouts efficiently, have your shake, sleep, and foam roll, and you will be able to prevent being sidelined by crazy soreness.
About the Author:Josef Brandenburg is a Washington D.C.-area fitness expert with 14 years of experience and co-author of the international best-selling book "Results Fitness." In 2004, he started The Body You Want personal training program, which specializes in helping you get the body you want in the time you have available. Josef holds certifications from Precision Nutrition, American Council on Exercise, National Academy of Sports Medicine, Functional Movement Systems, Corrective High Performance Kinesiology, and the National College of Exercise Professionals.
Learn more about Josef on his blog, follow him on Twitter, or check out his fitness videos on YouTube.
How do you mitigate muscle soreness after working out?