Training for a triathlon, or competing in one, is extremely physically and mentally demanding. It is essential that during training or after completing a triathlon you spend time helping your muscles to relax and recover to prevent discomfort or injury. Luckily, most of the things that help to relax your muscles are also great for helping the mind to unwind. Here are 5 simple things you can do to help your muscles to relax and to keep yourself healthy!
Cook A Nutritious, High Protein Meal
Although you won’t want to be spending hours in the kitchen after competing or training, it is important to cook a high protein meal. Consuming protein in the post-exercise recovery period can optimise the body’s natural ability to help muscle recovery. Magnesium supplements are also great to take post-exercise as they can help to prevent injury by loosening tight muscles.
A quick and easy high-protein meal would be a chicken and chorizo tray bake with roasted potatoes and vegetables. All you need to do is place whole chicken breasts or thighs onto a tray with chorizo, potatoes and your choice of vegetables. Drizzle with olive oil and season with your favourite herbs and spices. For a vegan option, replace the meat with tofu and chickpeas. Cook at 180 degrees for around 25-30 minutes and simply dish up. It takes 5 minutes to prep, giving you plenty of time to rest while it’s cooking. The best bit of all is that you only need a chopping board, tray, plate and cutlery, meaning you will have next to no washing up!
Drink Plenty of Fluids (Non-Alcoholic!)
Drinking water before and during exercise is important, but even more so afterwards. You need to replenish your fluids that have been lost during exercise in order to allow your body to transport essential nutrients around the body to aid recovery.
Throughout the day after finishing your training or event, make sure you are drinking plenty of water. As tempting as it might be to treat yourself to an alcoholic drink, try to keep this to a minimum in order to help your body to recover properly. You should also try to drink around 500ml straight after you have finished.
Have a 15 Minute Stretching Session
Having a good stretch after your exercise is key in helping to break down the build up of lactic acid and to facilitate general recovery. Thankfully, this can also help to relieve soreness the following day!
While your traybake is cooking, spend 15 minutes having a good full body stretch. There are some great guided stretching videos on YouTube if you are looking for inspiration. Taking a short amount of time to work on your muscles will make you much more likely to recover quickly.
Take A Hot Bath
Once you’ve eaten and had a good stretch, it’s time to treat yourself to a hot bath. Run your bath and add your favourite bubble bath. Hot bath’s are great for circulation and muscle relaxation. Some …