3 Things to Ensure Maximum Recovery and Results
Some of you are finding that your new years goals are becoming harder and harder to follow. We spend so much time channeling our passion to improve and work harder that we can often forget the other side of the coin. This is a story of yin and yang. Our inner drive to get better is the yin and without an equally balance yang, or recovery strategies, you will find yourself burnt out and failing. The first step in recovery must be prioritizing sleep. Here are 3 things you can do to improve your sleep habits.
- Have a schedule. Go to bed and wake up within a 30 minute window every day. Waking up early during the week and sleeping in on the weekends is ruining your circadian rhythm, or biological clock that helps you recovery at night and be alert during the day. For example, John Doe goes to sleep between 10:00-10:30pm every night and wakes up between 6:00-6:30am.
- Cut the screen time. Avoid all screens for 1 hour before bed time. Blue light from electronics blocks the release of melatonin, your sleep hormone, from the brain. You do not need to send that last email or check your Facebook feed for the 5th time. If you work late nights and screens are unavoidable, I recommend you invest in a quality pair of blue light blocking glasses.
- Get 30 minutes of sunlight or red light stimulation per day. Both of these types of light waves can increase the secretion of melatonin at night to result in deeper more restful sleep.
Fueling Your Recovery
The next important thing for recovery is proper nutrition. Nutrition is often the last thing people worry about when thinking about an upcoming week. Here are some steps to help you make quality nutrition choices during a busy week.
- Choose 1 day out of the week to go to the store. This will soon become your schedule and you will have no problem sticking to this.
- Choose 2 days out of the week that you will cook food for the upcoming days. My favorite days to prep meals are Sunday and Wednesday. If you do not have the time, there are many companies that will prep meals for you.
- Always have meals ready. This will decrease the likelihood of quick meals, like fast food, that will leave you tired and unable to focus due to hormone and blood sugar crashes.
Understanding that life requires balance is key to staying on track. You can only focus on the yin or drive for so long before the yang requires attention. Use the 6 steps we talked about to balance the yin and yang that is your life and, as always, keep moving.
HPC Doctors and Staff