Ask Amy: How Can I Incorporate Recovery Days Into My Routine?
We’re proud to have Amy Hoover on board as P.volve’s Doctor of Physical Therapy, where she’s able to consult the entire community about the method and how it impacts the body. In our Ask Amy series, she’s answering your questions first hand so you can get the most out of your work with P.volve.
We can schedule workout after workout, but it's hardly worth it without proper rest. We hear it often in fitness: "Be sure to rest and recover", but what exactly does that look like?
In P.volve, we not only encourage incorporating rest days into your routine, but we also factor in active recovery days to still help rest your muscles with gentle, simple movements. Read on for Dr. Amy's advice on how P.volve can help with recovery.
How can we be sure we’re properly resting our muscles?
Muscles, when worked, need time to rest in order to continue to function properly. It is a simple supply and demand. Though we build strength by loading and challenging the muscles, they need rest to recover. If we work a muscle to the point of failure, it may spasm or tighten up in response. A tight muscle is inherently weak, so this is a sign of overuse. Feeling a little sore can be normal after a good workout, but tightness is not. If we are properly resting we will feel good and want to move more.
How often should rest or recovery days be incorporated into a routine?
This will depend on the intensity of the workout. At least once per week you should rest and give your body a break from strengthening. Walking or stretching on these days is OK. When doing more intense workouts, you may want to add more rest days in between. Listen to what your body needs.
Is there a difference between active recovery and rest days?
A true rest day is just that, meaning no exercise. Active rest days are when you take a break from the intense workouts and just move a little, like a walk, stretching, restorative yoga or something similar like a P.volve active recovery day.
How can the Precision Foam Roller help with recovery?
It's an excellent tool for recovery. You can use this to roll out your glutes, quads, calves, hamstrings, even along the sides of the back and shoulders. It’s a great self massage tool to help get the blood flow to the muscles that you target during your workout. You can also do little self mobilizations along the spine. Place the roller perpendicular to the spine at the top of the ribcage or thoracic spine, then gently extend over the roller for a nice spinal stretch. Move the roller down a few inches and repeat through the lower back.
We are proud to announce Amy as P.volve’s Doctor of Physical Therapy, consulting the entire community about their work with our method. She’ll be continually providing feedback and answering important questions for the P.volve community, so keep an eye out for her advice on the blog. Feel free to email email@example.com for topics you’d like Amy to cover!