Let’s be real: everyone needs downtime, a time where not only our bodies can recover, but also our minds. Believe it or not, it’s possible to schedule downtime in our everyday lives. The best part? You can create a routine that works best for you. We all have a little extra time on our hands at the moment, or alternatively a little more stress, so finding ways to create great habits to take care of ourselves is important.
Are you exercising more with your extra time? If you are, then helping your body recover will let you smash that next workout with a fully recovered body!
Do you find that all of the extra bodies in your house are adding to the ‘white noise’ with lots of actual noise? Need an escape? There are a few tricks below that can help turn the volume down…if not in reality, then at least in your head.
Are you going stir crazy with cabin fever? As a somewhat high strung, Type A personality, Coach Andrea has a plethora of strategies to quiet her mind and slip off into slumber; take advantage of her ‘homework’ to discover which of Athletic Evolution SPT’s top 10 ways of relaxing, recovering, and recharging might work for you!
There are plenty of health benefits associated with meditation: increasing resilience to stress, sharpening your attention and focus, and boosting your mood. Meditation may not be as fast-paced as some of the sports you may play. Whether you’re new to the practice or not, take it slow and gradually introduce it to your routine. Meditation doesn’t have to involve sitting criss cross on the floor and “ohmming”, simply sitting in a comfortable place and quieting the mind through practice, or the help of an app, can significantly increase your ability to relax.
2. Breathing exercises
Everything feels easier when you take a moment to… breathe. There’s a lot of power in a simple breath. A good simple start to breathing exercises is the 4-7-8 technique. It’ll only take 19 seconds to do if you do it one time! It involves breathing in for 4 seconds, holding the breath for 7 seconds, and exhaling for 8 seconds. This breathing pattern has been proven to help reduce anxiety or help people get to sleep easier.
3. Stretching exercises
If you’ve done training with me, then you know that as much as I emphasize this training component, I also include stretching at the end of every session. Be a friend to your body and even on off-days, schedule 10-15 minutes to get stretching in.
4. Foam rolling/massaging
And speaking of being a friend to your body, have you ever used a foam roller? While a foam roller may not give you the full in-person Swedish massage experience, there’s a lot of muscle tension that can be relieved with a foam roller. Don’t believe the wonders of a foam roller? Check out the available traditional or vibrating foam rollers in my online shop. Either which one will help you work out any muscle tension while at home.
5. Taking up a hobby
While training may be something you’re passionate about, think about what other activities fuel your fire. If you’re feeling extra creative, dive deep into an arts and crafts project (like Coach Andrea) or do some creative writing exercises (like our favorite Marketing Maven Lauren!). Whatever it is, find time for what you enjoy doing.
Ah… just hearing the word “sleep” sounds amazing, doesn’t it? It’s important to listen to your body and give it rest when it needs it. Having a routine with sleep is key. One piece of advice is don’t get too strict on having a particular bedtime. Focus more on going off of the notion, if you’re starting to feel tired, get ready for bed, and aim to get in 7-8 hours each night. And yes, sleep can also come in the form of mid-day naps…a 30-min power nap is often what Coach Andrea uses to recharge after a full day of coaching when she still has a ton of administrative work to do!
7. Using essential oils
Are you in on the essential oil craze? When searching for your next essential oil scent, consider what you’re looking to achieve with them. Essential oils can be used for a variety of reasons: to scent your house or freshen things up like laundry, to relieve migraines or headaches, to reduce anxiety, and more. Pro-tip for essential oils: read the labels before buying. Some, you cannot put on your skin. In that case, opt for a diffuser. If you’re looking to expand or begin your essential oil collection, check out Coach Andrea’s friend Rebecca’s Doterra site for suggestions and assistance. Coach Andrea’s favorites are Lavender and “Liquid Xanax” (combination of Serenity and Balance) for a peaceful night’s rest.
8. Taking in the necessary vitamins and minerals
Sometimes, we need to give our body some extra love in the form of vitamins, minerals, and supplements that can help elevate our performance, boost our mood, replenish our bodies, and support our cognitive health. And as far as supplements, there are some products within my shop that can provide you what you may need before, during, or after a training session.
The list below are all staples in Coach Andrea’s nutrition game plan to fuel her workouts, recover from them, but also ensure that she also has a solid foundation of vitamins and minerals that may be missing in her regular eating habits.
Foundational vitamins: MNS-3 or Core
For relaxation: Oasis, Sleepworks
For recovery: Post-Workout Recovery, Nighttime Recovery, BioCharge
For recharging: Spark
9. Incorporating active recovery
When you think of active recovery, think about movement. Movement can be medicine for most of us, so take advantage of the outdoors by going for a simple walk around the neighborhood or going for a hike.
10. Doing “cold therapy’
I know sometimes just hearing the word “cold” can send shivers down your spine, but trust me! Cold and therapy are two words that can be paired together and can help relieve muscle pains, strains, and swelling. Whether you are using cold packs, cold baths, or ice baths all are great ways to help the body recover between workouts. If you’re looking to explore cold therapy beyond a simple ice pack, consider checking out cryotherapy.
If you are a local San Diegan, try out ChillNOut in UTC and take advantage of some great offers that Owner & CEO, Aria Leonard, are sharing with my subscribers and team! Try your first Cryotherapy session for FREE and take 50% off your first month of your Chill-n-Out membership if you purchase the same day. Exclusive Offer good through 5/30; use code #Train&Chill.