• Passive Recovery - By Mike Tuchscherer

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      We all know that training is stressful. And most of us understand that itís not the stress of training itself, but rather the recovery from that stress that produces the gains that we all work so hard to achieve.

      Recent research is showing some very interesting trends. It seems that the more often a muscle is stressed, the greater the aggregate gain becomes. So do you want big gains quickly? Most of us do. Then research suggests that you train more frequently.

      Of course, the common sense of application demands that there are acceptable limits to this. It is, after all, the recovery from this stress that leads to adaptation. And even among those who donít seek higher training frequencies, adequate recovery is still paramount and sometimes hard to come by. So no matter which camp you reside in, improving your rate of recovery is key to rapid and continued progress.

      Before we just jump right in to how to improve recovery rate, letís discuss what recovery rate is. It may sound simple to some of you, but I just want to make sure we are all on the same page. Recovery Rate is the Rate at which a person recovers. This means how fast they recover. Think of it like thisÖ if you are on a 100m track and the start line is post workout (i.e. not recovered at all) and the finish line is fully recovered, your Recovery Rate is how fast you are moving from the start line to the finish line. So what weíre trying to do with passive recovery methods is to improve the speed at which you travel from start to finish. ...more
      Comments 6 Comments
      1. chris_ottawa's Avatar
        chris_ottawa -
        I have never used ice baths or any sort of "cold therapy" so I can't speak from personal experience, but both Sheiko and Abadjiev have mentioned that athletes in peak condition often have lower immune system function and therefore they should avoid cold water or spending too much time outside in cold weather. The idea is that the body is diverting is resources to recovery and performance rather than the immune system, resulting is lower resistance to colds and such. Is there any truth to this?

        By the way, I strongly recommend the theracane. I used to use a foam roller or lacrosse ball on tight muscles but I find that 9 times out of 10 the theracane works better, plus you are in full control of where it's going. You can also use it to release hip flexors, which see to be a common issue. Unless you have your own personal massage therapist, it's worth looking into.
      1. jackw's Avatar
        jackw -
        I do agree with Chris on Theracane part as i have been using it since last couple of month and it really helps a lot. I am not sure at what cost Chris bought but after reading this article, i digg a bit and found good deal for the people interested in buying theracane https://www.activeforever.com/theracane-massager

        I am not sure whether this is right place to share the link but as i found it very useful and thought to share with readers
      1. FredrikS's Avatar
        FredrikS -
        I do ice baths at 50-52 degrees F for ten minutes three times per week. Have I noticed any difference? A few things.
        1. I sleep better --> better sleep, better recovery
        2. I do not freeze as easily
        3. I cant say I have noticed direct differences on recovery other than improved sleep. It feels good though.

        The recommendation of 20 minutes is considered dangerous though, depending on who you are asking. I had to work up to the ten minutes with cold showers. I would rather increase the frequency than prolong the session
      1. chris_ottawa's Avatar
        chris_ottawa -
        Quote Originally Posted by jackw View Post
        I do agree with Chris on Theracane part as i have been using it since last couple of month and it really helps a lot. I am not sure at what cost Chris bought but after reading this article, i digg a bit and found good deal for the people interested in buying theracane https://www.activeforever.com/theracane-massager

        I am not sure whether this is right place to share the link but as i found it very useful and thought to share with readers
        I paid just over $40, but I live in Canada so everything is more expensive. What you linked looks like a good deal.
      1. chris_ottawa's Avatar
        chris_ottawa -
        Quote Originally Posted by FredrikS View Post
        I do ice baths at 50-52 degrees F for ten minutes three times per week. Have I noticed any difference? A few things.
        1. I sleep better --> better sleep, better recovery
        2. I do not freeze as easily
        3. I cant say I have noticed direct differences on recovery other than improved sleep. It feels good though.

        The recommendation of 20 minutes is considered dangerous though, depending on who you are asking. I had to work up to the ten minutes with cold showers. I would rather increase the frequency than prolong the session
        Just wondering, do you find that it affects your immune system at all? Did you get sick this past winter?
      1. FredrikS's Avatar
        FredrikS -
        Quote Originally Posted by chris_ottawa View Post
        Just wondering, do you find that it affects your immune system at all? Did you get sick this past winter?
        Actually, I havent been sick after I changed my diet in august. My girlfriend, my parents and friends has all caught the flu or one/several colds. More interesting is, that in Sweden, May and April is birch pollen season and I am super allergic, it usually hits me like a sledgehammer as soon as the pollen levels rises. I always fear what the pollen season will do to my training. I have had one reaction this season when the levels started to increase, but since then I have barely been affected. I dont even take my medicine no more, no pills, no eye drops, nothing, and it doesnt affect training or school the slightest.