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IMPROVING YOUR PERFORMANCE & RECOVERY WITH BREATH

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Are you wanting to take your training/recovery to the next level?

Would you like to perform better, not only in the gym but also throughout your day to day?

Would you like to feel better, move for longer and recover optimally both during and post workout?

You may be wondering what the special secret/supplement is… The answer is simple; your breathing.

Now I understand, you’re already breathing while training, yes; However, are you breathing correctly & optimally? If you’d really like to take your performance and recovery to the next level, start nasal breathing while you train.

Why?

This optimises the oxygen intake into your working muscles, meaning you will be able to move better & sustain energy for longer periods of time.

When mouth breathing while exercising you are depleting yourself of oxygen; which is counterproductive when your heart rate is climbing & you’re needing the extra oxygen to keep you moving efficiently & effectively.

So how do you make the change?

By simply breathing through your nose instead of your mouth.

At first, this may mean slightly dialling back the intensity of your training, especially if you’re doing high intensity. However as your body adapts, as your lungs open & your lung capacity increases, your training will improve & your threshold for higher intensity training while nasal breathing will increase.

A greater indicator is once you’re unable to maintain nasal breathing, you’ve worked beyond your threshold. Working just below & slowly increasing your intensity/capacity is where you will get the greatest results.

If you’re someone who really likes to push hard then at minimum, return to a nasal breath throughout your rest. This will help you to optimise your recovery in the rest periods & continue powering through in your work periods.

Now from a recovery standpoint, let’s break it down further..

Your autonomic nervous system has two branches; sympathetic & parasympathetic – both are important/necessary.

Sympathetic is your fight, flight freeze & stress response etc. This is what’s being activated when you’re exercising and putting your body under various types of stress. 

Parasympathetic is your rest, digest, relax & rejuvenate response etc. This is where you want to be ideally 70-80% through your entire day, and especially coming back to post training.

This gives your body the chance to truly rest, recover, heal & rejuvenate at a cellular level. If you continue going throughout your day in a sympathetic response, your body won’t have the chance to relax, rest & recover.

This looks like conscious connected breaths in & out through the nose or in through the nose out through the mouth for a recommended length of 4 seconds in, 6 seconds out. Continue this sequence until you feel your body/self relax & your heart rate slow down.

The more you connect back to your nasal breath thorough training & the day the better you will feel/perform AND the more your body will thank you around training.

And lastly, the more you practise conscious breathing; the more your unconscious breath patterns improve.. meaning your overall health, wellbeing, recovery & vitality will improve too.

If you have any further questions about the breath, reach out to me in the studio!

Ryan Poulter

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