After a hard workout, it’s tempting to let out a sigh of relief and go about your day without a second thought. However, what you do after a workout is just as important as the workout itself. Unfortunately, many people make post-workout mistakes that can negatively impact their fitness goals.
Whether it’s skipping the cool-down or not properly refueling, these mistakes can leave you feeling fatigued, and may even impede your progress.
In this article, we will explore some of the most common post-workout mistakes and how to avoid them, so you can maximize the benefits of your hard work and achieve your fitness goals.
7 Most Common Post-Workout Mistakes People Make
Here are the most common post-workout mistakes that people make when they are starting out in their fitness journey:
1. Being inactive right after
This is the ultimate mistake because, during exercise, your muscles create toxins that will then have to be eliminated. But if you sit on your couch and sit idle, how are you going to eliminate those toxins?
Therefore, you should always be on the move, this can be walking or, for example, cycling home.
2. Do not take a shower
Did you just run and you’re hungry? Don’t rush to the kitchen, go through the bathroom first.
You’ve been sweating a lot, so you need to wash up to prevent bacteria from growing. In addition, perspiration cools the body, so it is important not to subject your muscles to too drastic a change in temperature. It is also for this reason that we advise you not to take a cold shower. Start with hot water and gradually lower the temperature. Gently, you will allow your blood to circulate better. Once clean, you can sustain yourself.
3. Take a shower right away
Many will recognize themselves, we sweat to death, we run out of time and so we go in the shower immediately after the session. This is a mistake because during the effort, your body temperature has increased and you risk taking a shower with hot water while it cools down.
You have to wait for your heart rate to slow down and your body temperature to regulate. Generally, it is advisable to wait about twenty minutes before taking a shower after a sports session.
4. Eat fatty or sugary food
After exercise, your body should be provided with the nutrients it needs to support or speed up its metabolism.
Your body is in a tired condition, so no need to tire it out further with bad fat or a sugar spike. Therefore, it is necessary to provide one’s body with the required intake of proteins, carbohydrates, etc. We, therefore, avoid chocolate bars as indicated above and fast food.
Eating after exercising is a good thing, but be careful not to overeat. We should not feel bloated and reduce to nothing all the efforts we have made.
Do not hesitate to consume foods rich in protein and low in calories. Eat fruits, cereals, dairy products, eggs, salmon, or even chicken. You can also eat sweet products, but prefer natural sugars which are easily assimilated and which provide essential minerals for good muscle health.
Finally, you will be advised to eat within two hours of physical exertion, because this is when the body tries to replenish its reserves.
6. Stretching Blandly
The question of stretching after sport is debated. Some believe that these stretches are essential to avoid injuries, while others argue that they can damage your muscles.
Sports experts and doctors explain that it is better to warm up than to stretch before physical exertion. After intense physical activity, one should not stretch immediately.
It would even seem that stretching immediately after exercise could make the aches worse because it would increase the small muscle damage caused by the effort.
In addition, stretching can block blood circulation. If you want to reduce soreness, gently stretch an hour after exercise. These stretches should not hurt you.
7. Forgetting to hydrate
Do not think that hydration is only done during the sports session. On the contrary, an activity, whether intense or not, requires hydration commensurate with the efforts made.
All you need is to drink water. On the other hand, you should not drink half a liter of water at once. Just small sips spaced out throughout the day. 6 or 8 glasses of water a day are more than enough.
Post-workout recovery is just as important as the workout itself. Making mistakes during the recovery process can negatively impact your fitness goals, increase your risk of injury, and hinder your overall performance.
The post-workout period is a crucial time to replenish your body with the necessary nutrients, hydration, and rest that it needs to recover and grow stronger. By avoiding these common post-workout mistakes and adopting healthy habits, you can enhance your fitness progress and improve your overall health and well-being.
Remember to listen to your body, be patient with the process, and make recovery a top priority.