Have you ever found after consistent boxing training that it is taking your muscles longer for you to fully recover? Boxing is one of the most demanding sports physically on your body which makes it vital that you have a good recovery process so you can continue performing efficiently at the highest level.
In this blog, I have compiled a list of 10 effective tips to help muscle recovery after your boxing sessions. The tips below have all personally helped me in my recovery in between sessions and I recommend you combine these tips for maximum recovery!
Training hard is very important to reach your goals physically, but training smart is vital for longevity in a sport that takes no prisoners.
This is probably one we are all very guilty of BEFORE and AFTER workouts. As someone in my late 20s about to be 30 soon. I have truly started to appreciate stretching before and after training as much as possible to keep me feeling loose and ready.
By stretching the main muscle groups pre-workout you are helping your muscles be flexible which will help reduce stiffness and the chance of injuries. For post-workout stretching has been proven in much research to help blood flow and reduce muscle soreness. (Science for Sport)
It’s also important to remember to stretch the muscle groups you will be using each workout. So in the case of boxing you want to be stretching the majority of your upper and lower body. You use most of your body for each punch and movement you make so your shoulders, and chest muscles are important to stretch in order to deliver consistent and powerful punches.
2. Take protein supplements
You will obviously need to invest in this, but I highly recommend taking a protein supplement if you are planning on doing a lot of boxing training. Proteins are the main ingredient in muscle recovery and taking this it will help speed up your muscle recovery rate as you will be getting key nutrients into your body rebuilding and repairing your muscles after a hard training session.
I can’t stress how important this is for anyone who is boxing consistently in the gym. By taking protein supplements you will definitely see a big difference in your performance and recovery. It will give you that extra boost which means continuing to perform at the highest level.
I recommend you check out my top 10 protein supplements for boxing here to get started.
3. Take a CBD Oil product
In terms of CBD oil products, many of the top CBD brands have some sort of CBD cream/gel to help with muscle aches. This is a great alternative to help with muscle soreness and inflammation.
Now as someone who is training all the time, the CBD cream has really benefited me in my muscular recovery after a hard boxing or gym session.
Your body has its own endocannabinoid system which means it’s one of the most effective ways to quickly absorb through your skin with a CBD cream/gel product.
If you are unsure where to start I personally recommend Blessed CBD or Kanibi. You can also check out my CBD oil guide for fighters here or my top CBD recommendations for more options.
Drinking lots of water and keeping hydrated is an essential parts for anyone that wants to stay fit and healthy. In terms of recovery and keeping well hydrated it will mean better muscle recovery. By exercising your muscles you will become stronger first by breaking down and then rebuilding through protein synthesis.
This, however, requires that the muscles are hydrated first, if you are too dehydrated after, the protein synthesis will slow down and therefore your recovery after your boxing training will take longer. (Check out drip drops article for more)
5. Foam Roller
Foam rollers are also a brilliant alternative to stretching after a hard session, especially if you are feeling a bit sore the next day. Here is a great video below by Critical Bench who explains and shows some foam roller exercises below:
Another great example of how a foam roller helps was in this a study published in the Journal of Athletic Training that suggested that using a foam roller after your workout will help reduce and delay muscle soreness and this, therefore, helps improve performance in future workouts.
Here are some foam roller options on Amazon you check out here or check out Pulseroll’s massage foam roller.
6. Massage Gun
Massage guns have recently really become very popular and are definitely a more expensive option to go for if you are planning on better muscle recovery. Much like the foam roller, it helps to target deep tissue muscle by repeatedly moving in and out.
A massage gun aims to reduce inflammation by flushing extracellular fluids such as lactic acid in the muscle tissue. This is great for boxers as it can quickly reduce muscle soreness, relax tight muscles and ease tension.
From personal use, I have found massage guns great if you have tightness in one area. You can also quickly use lots of areas for 2-3 mins to help you feel a difference. I have personally used the OPOVE Massage Gun and Pulseroll Mini Massage Gun which both come with lots of different massage heads to use. There are also other popular options such as Threagun you can see on Amazon.
Now unless you have someone to massage you, it might be worth finding a professional masseuse to help you out with this one. Especially to target those back muscles that get used so often whilst boxing training and even in day-to-day life.
Getting a massage even once a week will really be able to help aid and prevent injuries, while also helping you continue performing. A massage can also help by giving you a mental boost releasing “feel good” endorphins.
This is a brilliant option if you have the budget to do so!
8. Ice bath
For the average person, this can be quite a nuisance to do, but if you are really serious about your muscle recovery this can be one of the most effective ways to help your muscles recover quickly after a hard session.
Ice baths help by reducing inflammation and increasing the way blood and other fluids like lactic acid flow through the body. Basically, when your muscles sit in cold water, the blood vessels compress and then once they get out they open up again. This helps to remove metabolic waste in the muscles that cause them fatigue and weakness. (Read Men’s Health)
Nutrition is a key component to any athlete dedicated to their craft and having a good nutritional diet plan is just as key to your recovery as it is to your performance. In an article by Healthline they state you should consider having protein, carbs and fats to help speed up the recovery depending on your body type and physical activity.
In the case of boxing training, this can be a combination of different things like resistance, strength and endurance training. So it’s important that you consider what you eat for your post-workout at least 45 minutes after your workout. Here are some ideas:
- Grilled chicken with roasted vegetables.
- Scrambled Eggs with avocado spread on toast
- Oatmeal, whey protein and a banana
- Tuna and avocado on whole grain bread.
- Salmon and Sweet potato
I highly recommend you check out the following nutrition plans books created specifically for fighters which I have found useful to use in past:
- 30-Day Fighter’s Diet by Expert Boxing
- Chris Algeiri’s The Fighter’s Kitchen
- Combat Sports Nutrition eBook
Having a good night’s sleep is essential for your muscle recovery in boxing. When you are sleeping this is the primary time when your muscles will be recovering through protein synthesis and human growth hormone release. (Sports Lab NYC)
It’s worth trying to get at least 7-9 hours of sleep to maximize the recovery of your muscles which in turn will make you feel well-rested and ready to take on the day!
[Bonus tip] REST DAY!
Now it’s very important to make sure you have rest days, sometimes as fighters, we feel that we have to keep pushing through the pain, but in reality, all we actually need to do is take a day or couple of days off. Many of the greatest fighters have been guilty of this in the past and have bad consequences like getting injuries that leave you out longer than you should.
If you know you’re injured, make sure you take time off to recover or see a sports physio to get a professional to give you advice. As I said at the beginning of this article! TRAIN SMARTER, not harder!
Hope you enjoyed reading this article. Let me know if you will try any of these tips or what you might do.
Thanks for reading!
For more boxing training advice visit the link here or check out some related useful articles and blogs below:
- Top 10 Exercises To Improve Hand Speed For Boxing
- 10 Exercises To Improve Your Reflexes For Boxing
- Shadow Boxing Exercises For Home Or The Gym
- 10 Exercises To Increase Your Punch Power For Boxing
- Simple Boxing Workout Routines For Home
- 6 Key Boxing Defensive Techniques – Hit And Don’t Get Hit
PLEASE NOTE* All the above are just my suggestions from personally boxing training over the years. Always ask your coach or a health professional to get advice for more detail on any of the above to help with your recovery. Especially if you are injured. 😉