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Critical Component Series – Recovery

Critical Component Series – Recovery

Everyone, and I do mean everyone, needs a day off for rest and recovery. Incorporate these techniques into your routine for optimal results.

In this 6-part series, I will briefly explain the essential pieces that comprise a complete strength and conditioning program for a MMA athlete. The six components are:

  1. Dynamic Warm-Up
  2. Explosive Medicine Ball Movements
  3. MMA-Specific Resistance Training
  4. Flexibility
  5. Metabolic Conditioning or Energy System Development (ESD)
  6. Rest and Recovery

Having gone through all of the physical movements and techniques in a well rounded strength training program, it’s time to discuss the ever important art of recovery. Given the wear and tear you’ll inevitably endure using this type of MMA workout routine, this list of recovery methods will be extremely helpful in getting you back to 100%.

1. Rest
During our 8-week programs, guys typically train 6 days per week with one day of complete rest. Other than running some errands, walking the dog, or maybe getting a massage, not much happens on rest days. This is vital for tissue recovery and muscle repair. Your body is “beat up” (quite literally) all week long, and shutting down the engine will offer time to heal so that you’re able to reduce soreness and let your muscles grow. That 7th day can consist of lounging around on the couch, watching some football, and getting some nutrient-dense, quality calories into your system.

2. Nutrition
You wouldn’t put cheap, low grade gas in your high performance Bentley would you? So why fill your high performance body with fast food and other highly processed foods? You really are what you eat, so crushing McDonald’s, Chinese, or pizza on this off day just doesn’t make sense. The foods you eat are vital to getting the most out of every camp, every session, every set, and every rep. I always recommend my clients and athletes eat a clean, well-balanced diet. One that is high in organic, lean protein, nutrient dense carbohydrates, healthy fats, and lots of fruits and vegetables.

Admittedly, when it comes to supplements, I am not a huge proponent of loading up on pills and powders. I always say eat real food first. Remember, a poor diet supplemented is still a poor diet. However, considering busy lifestyles and financial constraints, supplements may be a viable option for you to get the necessary nutrients your body needs. If you’re on OneResult, then I’m sure you’re familiar with the various post-workout proteins, products, and shakes on the market today. They’ve done a great job researching and investigating all the options out there so you can be confident you are getting quality stuff in the 1R store.

3. Massage/Bodywork
There are many types of massage therapies available. If you’re an MMA fighter, it’s best to find a therapist that has experience working with athletes specifically. Someone that can help you relax, feel good, and help out with any sore, tight, or inactive areas of the body. Massage work also helps with improved circulation, improved flexibility, reduce swelling & cramping, and the release of endorphins. If you can’t afford to get weekly massages, using a foam roller regularly is another great option that will help you reap similar benefits.

4. ART (Active Release Technique)
If you have experienced ART therapy before, then you may not categorize this as either recovery or relaxing! While some ART techniques may be a bit uncomfortable, it really is a necessary evil if dealing with injuries and/or imbalances. Basically, ART is a soft tissue movement-based massage technique that treats problems with muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves. It is a technique that should be administered by a certified ART practitioner to ensure quality work. It is more “issue specific” than traditional massage work and foam rolling, therefore, it can provide more effective and time efficient results.

5. Mental Rest
For MMA athletes, “getting away” from the fight game sometimes, having balance in one’s life, and not let the sport (or anything for that matter) totally consume and run your life is really important.

  • Take up an active hobby like surfing or hiking
  • Listen to your favorite band on your iPod
  • Go to a concert with your significant other
  • Spend time with friends and go have a couple drinks (never thought you’d hear a strength coach say THAT did you?!)
  • Read a motivating book
  • Go watch a movie

These five all help your body and mind unwind from a challenging week of training. Add a few into your weekly off day and you’ll be well on your way to preventing over-training.

Additionally 1R would recommend the following supplements to help you get back to 100%:

  1. Optimum Nutrition 2:1:1 Recovery – The carbs and protein will help you recover and build lean muscle faster after tough workouts
  2. Optimum Nutrition Fish Oil – These tasteless fish oil pills will help you burn fat, improve joint health, and reduce inflammation associated with hard training
  3. Optimum Nutrition ZMA – The combination of natural minerals in this supplement will help you get a better, deeper sleep so that you’re back to 100% the next day

13 / 11 / 2017 1R