5 PROVEN TIPS TO MAXIMISE RECOVERY - Australian Sports Nutrition


Written by: ASN



Time to read 5 min

Brett Carrington, Sports Nutritionist and Personal Trainer

This article has been reviewed by and is endorsed by Brett Carrington, qualified Sports Nutritionist, Personal Trainer and founder of Brett Carrington Coaching. Check out Brett Carrington Coaching on Instagram.

Whether you're a casual runner, HIIT warrior, footy player, or lifetime weightlifter, one thing remains consistent: high-quality recovery is the key to optimal results!

When training for specific body goals like weight loss or muscle gain, it can be easy to overdo it when you're highly committed, especially if you're working to achieve your goals within a specific timeframe. The problem here is that without adequate rest and recovery, you put yourself at high risk of sustaining an injury, compromising your immune health, burning out, and suffering from fatigue, which will only set you back further from achieving your end goal.

From ice baths to magnesium soaks and floats, there's no denying that alternative recovery methods are certainly on the rise. Yet, nothing can beat the tried and tested methods, like quality nutrition and rest. Without further adieu, let's look into the top 5 proven tips to maximise recovery!

1. Protein Powder

A no-brainer! If you haven't already gotten yourself onto a high-quality recovery protein powder, then this is your permission slip to do so! Imperative for nutrient recovery, protein is an essential macronutrient known to help repair tissue, build muscle, and make crucial enzymes and hormones. It's also notable for keeping you full and satisfied, which is helpful when striving towards weight management goals.

When you skip your post-workout protein shake, you're depriving yourself of some serious nutritional benefits like increasing the risk of losing hard-earned muscle mass as your body looks to break down your muscles into amino acids and use them for energy. This is the last thing you want after putting in the hard work of training towards your body goals, not to mention the onset of post-workout fatigue and muscle sorenessโ€ฆ Ouch!

For the ultimate post-workout replenishment, we recommend using Evolve Reload. This 5-star all-encompassing recovery matrix boasts an all-in-one approach to maximise your recovery window, thanks to a premium formula designed to deliver quality nutrients at the perfect time. In each serve of Evolve Reload, you will reap the rewards of fast-absorbing hydrolysed WPI, rapid carbs, creatine, l-glutamine, and BCAAs for the ultimate accelerated recovery. If bouncing back optimally after your workout is a priority, then Reload is your go-to high protein recovery formula!

2. Hydration

Did you know dehydration can significantly affect your muscles' ability to repair themselves efficiently? When your muscles are exercised, they become stronger by being broken down and then rebuilt with the help of a process called muscle protein synthesis. However, your recovery activity slows down significantly when dehydrated, ceasing protein synthesis and rebuilding muscle tissue.

When adequately hydrated, water is responsible for flushing toxins out of the body and carrying nutrients into the cells for optimal recovery and health, body temperature regulation, and pH balance. It also aids with muscle tension, soreness, and fatigue which is a massive complaint for many who do not prioritise their exercise recovery.

So, how much water do you really need? Depending on physical activity and temperature, guidelines recommend consuming 2 to 3L of water per day to remain adequately hydrated and healthy; however, this does vary from person to person. You'd be surprised how many people don't drink enough water purely because they don't like the taste! Fortunately, there are many ways to flavour your water and fuel your recovery simultaneously, but if you had to ask us what our go-to option is, we'd say Damage Control from Evolve.

Loaded with Essential Amino Acids (EAAs) to fuel your recovery and support muscle protein synthesis, Damage Control is a refreshingly delicious way to keep up your hydration demands while giving your body the nutrients to dominate recovery.

3. Sleep

There's nothing worse than back-to-back training sessions, day after day, with poor quality sleep in between. It's just not sustainable and will only push you further back from your goals, even if you feel like you're managing ok.

People who exercise intensely require even more sleep than the average person as sleep deprivation can significantly impair muscle recovery by interfering with the body's inflammatory response and the hormone production needed for muscle growth. We get it. A good night's sleep is hard to come by these days, especially when dealing with day-to-day life, work, social commitments, and stress, but at some point, it needs to be prioritised to optimise your recovery.

Need some support getting the most out of your sleep? It might be time to accept a little help from Switch Nutrition's magnesium adrenal support formula, Adrenal Switch. Packed with all the things you need to support your recovery and your shut-eye, this highly sought-after formula boasts a gluten-free elixir of vegan-friendly ingredients like Magnesium, Zinc, Vitamin B6, Ashwagandha, and critical amino acids to give your body the support it needs.

4. Nutrition

Eating a balanced and nutritious diet is imperative for your recovery! We mentioned protein powder is essential for immediate post-workout repair; however, ensuring you're consuming enough protein throughout the day will also support your recovery and overall health. Protein needs depend on your age and activity level; however, the recommendation is 0.8-1g of protein per kilo of body weight per day for general health.

A balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, protein (meat or plant-based), and grains will support your nutrient needs, reducing the risk of nutrient deficiencies that may impair muscle recovery. A diet full of healthy foods will also help your immune system keep you strong when faced with illness, including combating brain fog, improving focus, and increasing your body's overall energy to ensure you can stay on track. While consuming the occasional treat is ok, overconsuming overly processed foods may come between you and your recovery, leaving you feeling lethargic, weak, and not your best.

5. Rest

There's no one-size-fits-all approach for recovery, so what works well for you may not be the case for the next person at the gym. Rest days are crucial for recovery as each time you exercise, you develop microscopic tears in your muscles, requiring rest time to heal and strengthen. When you skip rest days, your muscles don't get ample time to repair, leading to poor performance back in the gym and an increased risk of injury. You don't want to work your butt off to suffer an injury due to a lack of rest. Take the day off!

When training for specific body goals like weight loss or muscle gain, taking 1 or 2 rest days per week is an essential part of the process. You are supporting your muscle recovery, but you're also giving your joints, mind, and energy a rest.

The main pillars of recovery are nutrition, hydration, and sleep, no matter what exercise you're doing. It's ok to take a day off from breaking down your body! Your muscles, bones, joints, blood pressure, and immune health will thank you for it.