It’s the biggest bummer of any newly forged fitness journey. You’re ticking off all those scheduled in sessions, cleaning up your nutrition, trying to down 3L of water daily and then disaster — injury strikes and you get side-lined.
Overuse, overtraining and lack of optimal recovery are so 2017, in 2018 it’s about making yourself bulletproof and safeguarding against injury. It’s time to shift the focus so you work smarter not harder with these 5 pieces of advice to help you have an injury free year!
Take it down a notch
It’s time to check your ego at the door. Sure, you may get a swell of pride when taking the most advanced option in class, but it is imperative for the sake of longevity to select the option most suitable for your body in this single moment. If there is any sense of vulnerability or overtaxing, then a modification is the answer. Any trainer worth their salt will be able to offer efficient modifications that will enable a progressive result, rather than throwing yourself into something you, and your body, are not yet ready for and walking out with an injury.
Prehab is all about taking a proactive approach to bulletproof your body against injury. By focusing on restoring optimal biomechanics and optimising your movement patterns, it generally concentrates on specific exercises performed to increase both strength and stability around joints and regain postural integrity. All while increasing the range of motion, mobility, balance and joint function. In the wider scheme of things, prehab can also cover areas including the quality of your sleep, optimal nutrition and a balanced workload. So how to do? Try including some of the exercises included in this Prehab Protocol Series to fire up engagement, activation and correct muscular recruitment before your next workout!
Listen to your body
Only caught three hours of shut eye last night? Then forcing yourself out of bed for that 6am spin class may not be the smartest option. In 2018 we’re all about working smarter not harder. More than ever, it is important to tune in to your body and assess what will best serve you today and in the long run. Elevated cortisol levels, whether a by-product of your stressful daily life or excessive training regime, can result in excess inflammation in the body, and in turn, shortcut to injury. If your body is sending you the signs to slow down, listen and opt for a restorative style practice instead.
A simple way to see if your body is rallying against your workouts. If you consistently walk out of a session feeling more drained than revitalised, it can be a sure-fire sign that your body is requiring a drop in intensity and increased recovery periods. Fuelled up, hydrated and well-rested? By all means, smash out that high intensity class! You’ll be able to put in the effort required and feel great afterwards!
Book in with a professional
They’ve done the study, training, long practice hours and earnt the titles for a reason, right?! Do your research and find someone you trust to guide you through a training program. With some many types of professionals within the fitness and wellness space these days it can be overwhelming to know where to turn, but as a general guide:
If you are looking to brush up on specific technique book in with a PT or exercise physiologist expert.
In need of rehab, have an acute injury or returning to training from pregnancy? Seek out a physiotherapist or 1-on-1 clinical Pilates instructor.
Looking for a muscular release and reset? Check out an osteopath or sports massage therapist.
Recovery is a hot topic this year and for good reason — if you’re serious about training, then you need to be just as serious about your recovery. Fact: adaptation and progression occur during the recovery phases, not the “work” phases. So it’s imperative you block out that necessary time for your body to adapt to the stress of the exercise, repair damaged tissues and replenish energy stores.
Think recovery is just about catching up on Netflix on the sofa? Think again. Active recovery can include low intensity sessions, foam rolling and gentle stretching. Or to really ramp up your recovery time, include some of the serious recovery players into your weekly schedule such as Cryotherapy chambers, infrared saunas, Epsom salt baths or LED light therapy sessions! RELATED ARTICLES