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After a strenuous workout, we all know our bodies need recovery time. But sometimes, we don’t focus on recovery like we should because we want to progress. The irony? Balancing the need for rest versus intensity helps you avoid injury — which means more days to work out without forced breaks.

Rest doesn’t mean stopping all workouts; it can mean changing your routine to use different muscles on different days.

Here’s a simple schedule you could follow and adjust to your needs:

  1. Three days of strength training (Monday, Wednesday and Friday)
  2. Two days of cardio (Tuesday and Thursday)
  3. Two days of active rest (not so much couch-potato action, just light activities) on weekends

When you alternate between strength training and cardiovascular exercise, for example, your body has time to recover in between similar workouts, says certified athletic trainer Amanda McMahan.

She says, “When you place greater than normal resistance on a muscle, it causes small microscopic tears in the tissue. This is perfectly normal. The tearing allows the muscle to strengthen, allowing viability of the muscle to increase.”

In addition to resting in between workouts, Ms. McMahan suggests using these tips to get the most out of your recovery time.

1. Don’t neglect the stretch

Incorporate stretching into your cool-down period. “People who stretch during cool down tend to have fewer complaints of muscle soreness and fewer injuries,” Ms. McMahan says.

Take between five and 10 minutes to help your body gradually transition to a resting or near-resting state. 

2. Get your H20

Hydration after any workout is very important —and drinking water is often the best place to start.

“Water is the most essential of all our nutrients,” Ms. McMahan says. “And replacing water after exercise aids in the recovery process.”

As you sweat during a workout, your body drains its water reserves. Dehydration can lead to muscle cramping, fatigue, headaches and poor physical performance. That’s why keeping yourself hydrated is one of the keys to good recovery.

3. Replenish with electrolytes

As you sweat, you also lose electrolytes — sodium chloride, potassium, magnesium and calcium.

“Electrolyte loss can also cause muscle cramping. So you want to replace those after activity,” Ms. McMahan says.

Sports drinks can help replenish your reserves after electrolyte loss as well as eating a balanced diet that includes fruits and vegetables. Bananas are a great after-workout snack filled with potassium, she says.

4. Power up with protein

Protein is critical because it helps you rebuild your muscles. Ms. McMahan recommends eating at least 20 grams of protein right after a tough workout. Good sources include eggs, fish, chicken, a protein bar or protein shake, she says.

5. Sleep well

Most people need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night. After a workout, it’s even more important to achieve this recommended amount of sleep to aid in your recovery.

“If you’re not resting enough, you will not feel the full benefits of your workout and you won’t effectively rebuild those muscles,” says Ms. McMahan.

6. Go for active rest

Active rest is after a week of intense exercise is critical. “This doesn’t mean you sit on the couch all weekend,” Ms. McMahan says. “Instead, perform light exercise to stimulate the recovery process without imposing undue stress.”

She recommends light activities you enjoy. This can include swimming, cycling, walking, hiking or kayaking. “Active rest is not as strenuous as your regular routine, but you are still staying active,” she says.

Follow these tips to help your body recover from your weekly workout routines, and you’ll find yourself refreshed and refueled — and ready to crank up your workouts when the new week begins.

SOURCE: https://health.clevelandclinic.org/strenuous-workouts-try-these-6-best-recovery-tips/

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Practice Policy Update Regarding COVID-19

Dear Patients:

Our patients, employees and family are our top priority at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

We ask you to not visit any of our locations if you have symptoms such as fever, sneezing, coughing and possible shortness of breath.

Please cancel your appointment and re-schedule once you are feeling better and are no longer suffering with symptoms.

Only non-symptomatic patients will be seen. No exceptions.

Accompanying family members – including children – are asked to remain in the waiting area and will not be allowed to enter the exam rooms.

During this time of high concern regarding the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) we are taking extra precautions to maintain the highest possible standards of safety and cleanliness. Please be advised that we are carefully following recommendations from both the CDC and WHO and are here to help guide you through this time if needed.

Some steps we are taking to keeping safe:

  1. We know how important cleanliness is and always maintain the highest standards of cleanliness. To further offer you peace of mind, we have increased the frequency of the cleaning of our office.
  2. Rest assured that hand washing is strictly followed. Hand sanitizer is available to all staff and patients.
  3. Additionally, if you have recently traveled to a country with high rates of the coronavirus or have been on a cruise, please reschedule your visit for at least 14 days from your return date. We will gladly accommodate your needs to reschedule. At that time, a telehealth interface can be arranged if necessary.

Find up-to-date and accurate information on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website and feel free to reach out with questions.

- Your team at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

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To learn more about Long Island Spine Specialists – and to discover how we can relieve your pain and help you find an improved quality of life – please contact our office today and schedule a consultation.

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