We are searching data for your request:
Upon completion, a link will appear to access the found materials.
Pushing your muscles to the limit during a workout can leave you with an all-over glow of accomplishment, boosted largely by an adrenaline rush. After an intense workout, your muscles need to recover and your body must refuel. Working out too frequently without adequate rest can lead to muscle strains and overuse injuries. There is no one simple answer to how long muscles take to recover. The answer depends on a variety of factors.
Age and Experience
Age and experience are two factors that play in to how long it takes your muscles to recover from a physical workout. Like many other health and fitness concerns, younger people tend to have a quicker recovery time than older adults. However, as Bodybuilding.com suggests, "young" is a relative term. Adults as young as 25 years old may require more recovery time than teen and college-aged athletes. However, young athletes who are novices to their sport may need more rest and refueling time than those who are well established in their chosen workout. Once your body becomes acclimated to a certain level of fitness and workout routine, less recovery time is needed.
Muscle recovery times vary depending on your refueling practices. When you exercise, you use up energy, called glycogen. During rest periods, glycogen must be restored to provide your body and muscles with energy for the next workout session. The average rate of glycogen restoration is a day to a day and a half, according to the American Council on Exercise. To support this process, and perhaps to speed it up a bit, eat carbohydrates and protein within an hour of your workout. Waiting too long to refuel can slow the process down significantly. Whole-grain carbs and lean proteins give you the nutrients you need without unhealthy fats. The American College of Sports Medicine reports that drinking low-fat chocolate milk aids muscle recovery, thus eliminating the need for expensive carbohydrate-laden sports drinks. Low-fat milk provides both protein and carbs for recovery and contributes to needed hydration.
Physical and mental setbacks can extend recovery time in some people. Anxiety and emotional problems can interfere with your focus and cause sleep problems that slow down your resting phase. Physical injuries such as muscle sprains and strains may put you on the sideline for longer recovery periods as well. Consult your doctor if you experience any type of "life" setback that interrupts you from your normal workout and recovery schedule.
The American Council on Exercise recommends participating in high-intensity workouts several times weekly with two days of rest in between to allow your muscles ample recovery time. Lower-intensity and -impact exercise may not require a full 48 hours off between workouts. You might only need a day to rest in this case. On the other hand, athletes who train for long races of five miles or more might need up to a week of rest and recovery between workouts.