Training at an elite level isn’t just about how hard you train; it’s also about how well you recover. My training group trains ten times each week. In order to be fresh and get the most out of each training session, it is important that we not only train properly, but also do the right things outside of training in order to take care of our bodies. I find this just as true for me, even though I’ve never had a major injury or even an injury that has required me to miss a practice (although, in hindsight, I should have taken it easier after my bruised rib in 2008).
Proper recovery requires two things: time and resources. As an undergrad, I was fortunate enough to have both the time and resources to do everything I wanted. I was never rushed for time and the school had a full staff of trainers, a sauna, free massage, sports medicine specialists, and state of the art equipment. All those resources remained when I began law school, but my free time dried up, forcing me to cut back on my hour-long post-workout routine. Since moving to Kamloops, things have changed yet again; I now have ample time, but limited resources.
To give you an idea of all the things an athlete can do, I’ve outline some of the recovery methods I’ve used throughout the years. Some work, some don’t, but since what works is quite individual it is helpful to list them all: