CrossFit Recovery in Six Simple Steps

You've just set a PR for your Fran time and hit your AMRAP score hard. Kudos! Now, it' time for an important step in your workout routine to ensure you stay at the peak of your performance: recovery. Most agree that CrossFit athletes need to spend the time to recover. However, there isn't necessarily one "proper way" to achieve this, especially because every CrossFit workout is different. There are a variety of tips and it all comes down to personal preference. To get advice from a CrossFit trainer, we sought out our own REM-Fit Lifestyle Coach Kevin, who shared his six tips for CrossFit recovery.
  1. Get a proper cool down.
Find a great coach to not only lead you through the workout but also a proper cool down.
  1. Consider your nutrition.
In general, athletes should have protein within five to ten minutes after a workout. While getting a protein drink or supplement ready, wash your hands and tend to any callouses. This will help prevent drying, cracking and tearing in the future, which will allow you to train hard. While on the nutrition topic, eat clean all day, every day for best recovery.
  1. Execute stability drills.
These drills are really important post- high-intensity training due to the likelihood that you ran through some less than perfect ranges of motion. Isometric midline or shoulder holds are always helpful.
  1. Pay attention to your lower half.
The lower half the body can use some good, old-fashioned smashing with a roller or barbell to facilitate the lymphatic system getting rid of the deoxygenated blood and other waste created during energy production.
  1. Sleep matters.
An aggressive CrossFitter needs eight to ten hours of sleep a night for optimal performance. And rest days are critical (Click to tweet!) Take one to three rest days or active recovery days a week.
  1. Manage the intensity.
At the end of the day, managing the intensity of the workout can help ensure your technique stays clean. This will prevent the accumulation of minor injuries and will allow you to keep training hard. Additionally, we polled the REM-Fit Life community, and asked how you recover from your CrossFit workouts to gain perspective from the everyday CrossFitter:
  • "Foam rolling and floss bands for days." , Ale D.
  • "Coconut water and lacrosse ball." , John G.
  • "Ice baths keep me cooler than cool after a heavy lifting session or long run. I also use an ice pack on my upper back along my shoulders and neck to help overall recovery and minimize inflammation after a kettlebell heavy WOD." , Melissa J.
  • "I get a meal in within an hour after doing a WOD." , David B.
  • "Proper diet and rest." , Jamie M.
  • "Quality food, sleep and repeat!" , Melody N.
Regardless of your personal recovery methods, getting the proper amount of sleep is crucial for every athlete, CrossFit or not. Even Camille Leblanc-Bazinet, REM-Fit athlete and 2014 CrossFit Games Winner says, "The number one best thing you can do to amp up those WODs is to get at least eight hours of bed rest," in an interview with WODShop.com. To monitor your sleep activity and to ensure you're getting a full eight hours, consider using the REM-Fit Sleep Monitor, which provides qualitative and quantitative data on how soundly you sleep at night. And, of course, we'd like to give a big REM-Fit thank you to all our fans who shared their CrossFit recovery tips and preferences.