Road to recovery
1 – Foam roller – £20-50
An absolute essential piece of recovery (torture) equipment for anyone training or looking for some muscular release. Self-myofascial release (SFR) in a nutshell fascia is the soft tissue portion of the connective tissue in the muscle that provides support and protection. The fascia can become restricted due to overuse, trauma, and inactivity. Consequently, inflammation occurs and if it becomes bad enough the connective tissue can thicken, which results in pain and irritation, and additional inflammation.
Foam rollers are not only for recovery but also for warm up and mobility sessions, helping you target areas that you cant stretch and would normally need to see a masseuse to release these areas. They come in a range of shapes and sizes with different hardness and smoothness. Incorporate this bit of kit into your pre and post workout routine and you will see results.
2 – BetterYou Magnesium oil spray – £12
This is my No1 go to piece for recovery. BetterYou do an amazing range of transdermal magnesium products that has been scientifically proven to raise your magnesium levels faster than traditional tablets and capsules. Give this product a try it is one of those products that you have to try it to believe it.
Why cant I just take tablets I hear you say?! Well by using the spray – the magnesium oil is absorbed through the highly porous epidermis and through to the blood vessels and muscles beneath. Completely bypassing the digestive system where many nutrients are not absorbed. Magnesium plays a fundamental role in optimal muscle contraction, skeletal strength and energy production, helping to sustain the high oxygen consumption necessary for athletic performance.
I have been using BetterYou oil spray for over 3 years now and I have never looked back. It can be applied before, during and after exercise. I always have one in my running pack when out on long runs as its super easy to apply when out on the trails.
Check out their website as they are always pushing the boundaries and bringing out new products. A must have for anyone doing any form of exercise.
3 – Hockey ball – £2-10
Much like the foam roller the hockey ball is another piece of kit that I cant go without. It is taking the pain levels up a notch compared to the foam roller as you are able to target specific areas and get right into problem areas.
Plantar fasciitis is a very common injury in running and endurance based sports where you spend prolonged time on you feet. It is caused by micro tears and inflammation in the plantar facia which is one of the largest ligaments in your body. Spending a few minutes a day rolling your foot over a hockey ball and loosening up your ligaments in your foot can help relieve pain and discomfort.
A great piece of kit to target small problem areas – an essential piece of kit to have in your bag when on the road to help loosen up any hard to get to areas.
4 – Voodoo floss band – £15 -25
The Voodoo Floss Band is an essential performance tool and should be a staple in the gym bag of every athlete looking to improve joint mechanics. Slightly more advanced than a foam roller and hockey ball.
In a nutshell the voodoo floss band can be applied much like a bandage over certain joints applying a huge amount of pressure. This helps by changing the alignments of our joints, forcing the muscle and joints into a full range of motion.
It also forces the blood away from the area you are targeting, friction between muscles fibres helps break scar tissue and lactic acid that you cant treat with a foam roller. When the compression of the floss band is released blood is rushed back to the area and washes away any junk that you just broke up.
A very helpful link here for more information – worth incorporating into any gym and recovery session for improvement in mobility.
5 – Bath tub N/A
Now I am not a person who likes to have a relaxing bath I get far too bored sitting in the bath with my nag champa incense sticks, aromatherapy oils and bath bombs. But ever since I started taking my endurance events a bit more seriously there is nothing more that I look forward to than a bath paired with some BetterYou Magnesium flakes.
Again BetterYou make an appearance because they cover all bases. 15-20 minutes in a hot bath with their magnesium flakes and the body is on the road to recovery.
I have been a big fan of hot to cold baths and showers. Going from hot to cold will help improve circulation of blood. Blood will rush to all your vital organs to keep them warm, jumping straight back into a hot bath will help flush the blood to the surface. It also helps with your lymphatic system contracting your lymph vessels to help move any unwanted waste and debris from cell and blood exchanges. Just as good is a cold to hot shower.
All in all a great recovery tool that everyone has in the house.