Let’s start with the guideline today:
“Recovery: blood flow facilitates recovery and healing faster, get moving every day.”
If you’ve read the other blogs I wrote this week and last week, you’ll get this instantly. For the recap, I’m writing blogs about Basic Lifestyle Guidelines, covering Balance, Purpose, Hydration, Sleep, Energy, Rhythm, Recovery, and Digestion. The previous blog on Rhythm already got into the topic of blood flow a bit, and the necessity of regular movement.
The general idea is to move your blood every day. That means you don’t just sit around on the couch, lay in bed, or sit in a variety of chairs driving from the desk job to the dinner table. You need to circulate!
When you go for a walk, hike, jog, run, bike ride, or get out on your skateboard, roller skates, snowboard, skis, kayak, or canoe, you’re moving your body a lot, circulating blood and lymph throughout the body, and circulating oxygen through your lungs. A gym workout can do the same thing. This flow of blood, lymph, and air has a lot of benefits.
So, let’s lay out a few of the positive recovery effects of blood flow:
- Blood flow brings oxygen and nutrients into damaged tissues to help them heal
- Blood flow transports immune cells around the body to fight infection
- Blood flow helps remove dead cells, carbon dioxide, and other waste products
- Blood flow improves the function of blood vessels, arteries, veins, and capillaries
- Blood flow helps muscles recover faster
- Blood flow strengthens your heart
In general, people are already familiar with the training effects of movement. For example, you can lift heavy weights to become stronger, do a lot of reps for bigger muscles, run long distances to gain endurance, run sprints to get faster, or practice gymnastic skills to learn stunts and tricks. However, what we’re talking about today is different. Today we’re talking about recovery. That means being able to get over the effects of the last workout (or other taxing, physically stressful experience).
Move every day, especially if you’re sore from a big workout. This regular movement will help today’s recovery and tomorrow’s performance. The repetition of this habit will improve your function and recovery abilities into the future.
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