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The basics of recovery

Recovery is a very important, but often overlooked element of training. You can hit the gym with ferocious intent six days a week, but if you do not pay close attention to your recovery, then you will not get the results that you want. It is not the one hour that you spend in the gym that defines your results, but rather how you spend the other twenty three hours of your day. So to ensure that you are recovering properly and getting the most out of your training, you need to pay close attention to the following areas:

Sleep

Sleep is absolutely vital to recovery. It is during sleep that our muscles recover and repair. Skimping on sleep will rob you of this valuable recovery time, and is also likely to make you feel lethargic and irritable. This is bad news for both your training and your general health. Always aim for around 7-8 hours a night if possible.

Nutrition

It is far beyond the scope of this article to talk in depth about nutritional strategies, but it is important to recognise that nutrition plays a key role in helping you to recover from exercise. Keep it simple and make sure that you consume quality sources of protein and fat, along with minimally processed sources of low GI carbohydrates.

Training

When it comes to training, quality always trumps quantity. Your body needs time to recover from exercise, so it is vitally important that you take days away from the gym. Four or five sessions a week is all that you need to get the results that you want. Doing more will jeopardise your recovery, your health and your results.

So there we go, a quick run through of some of the key elements that you need to consider if you are looking to maximise your recovery. Get these right, and you could take your training and your results to a whole new level.

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