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Give Your Body Some Love with This Energizing Recovery Exercise Routine

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  • Post last modified:September 25, 2023

If you have developed an affection for your fitness routine, it can be challenging to relinquish it — even for a day. You comprehend firsthand the effects that moving your body, striving towards objectives, and experiencing the exhilarating rush of endorphins can have on your mental health and overall wellness. Nonetheless, if you are not granting yourself a proper period of rest, you are setting yourself up for failure in the future.

Without sufficient recovery and rest, your chances of sustaining injuries, chronic exhaustion, burnout, and boredom — all things that can cause you to completely rebel against your seemingly unbreakable commitment to exercise — significantly increase. So, while it may appear counterintuitive, taking a day off from your rigorous or structured workouts will actually aid you in achieving your goals more quickly and without pain.

“Stretching, especially after exercising, is a crucial component of rest and recovery as it assists in resetting both your body and mind and preparing them for all the forthcoming challenges,” explains Sweat yoga instructor Phyllicia Bonanno.

Below, you will discover Bonanno’s very own active recovery workout, which commences with breathwork and subsequently incorporates nine distinct stretches centered around beginner-friendly yoga poses to alleviate tension from head to toe.

Active Recovery Workout

How it functions: Commence with gentle breathwork and meditation to be present. Then, proceed through these nine yoga pose stretches, holding each for the designated breath count before transitioning directly to the next stretch.

What you will need: a comfortable surface or mat for cushioning

Seated Breathing Meditation

Assume a comfortable seated position on the mat and allow yourself to focus on your breath. Throughout the practice, the act of breathing will provide you with power, strength, balance, and concentration for each pose.

Take 5-10 breaths.

Seated Side Stretch

  1. From a seated, crossed-leg position, reach and extend the left hand towards the sky while grounding the right hand on the floor next to the right hip.
  2. Experience the stretch along the side of the body with the lifted hand.

Take three breaths. Switch sides; repeat.

Seated Twist

  1. Position the right hand behind the hips on the floor, and place the left hand on the right knee.
  2. Rotate the torso and gaze over the right shoulder. Deepen the twist with each exhale.

Take three breaths. Switch sides; repeat.

Cat Cow

  1. Commence in a tabletop position with hands underneath the shoulders and knees underneath the hips.
  2. Take a deep breath, letting your abdomen expand as your eyes lift.
  3. Breathe out as you curl your spine and round it, directing your gaze towards your navel.

Take 5 breaths.

Reduced Lunge

  1. From feline cow, lift and plant right foot in between hands on the mat.
  2. Bend deeply into front knee, with back knee resting on the ground.

Take 5 breaths, then move onto Semi-Split (below) on same side.

Semi-Split

  1. From reduced lunge, sit back onto the heel of the rear leg.
  2. Extend front leg straight and fold torso forward.

Take 5 breaths. Switch sides; repeat Reduced Lunge and Semi-Split on the opposite side.

Cobra Flow

  1. Start lying face-down with hands under shoulders. Inhale, pressing through palms to lift chest, stretching abs and squeezing glutes to protect low back.
  2. Exhale to release back down to mat.

Take 5 breaths.

Pigeon Pose

  1. Start in downward dog (from high plank, lift hips to form an upside-down “V” shape with body).
  2. Bring right knee to right hand as right foot meets the left hand, lowering leg onto the floor with the shin parallel to the front of the mat.
  3. Slowly lower down in front of shin on forearms.

Take 5-10 breaths. Switch sides; repeat.

Reclined Bound Angle

  1. Lay face-up on the floor and allow knees to splay open as the soles of feet touch.
  2. Place one hand on the heart and the other on the belly.

Take 5-10 breaths.

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