Muscle stiffness conundrum

  • Whipmagic

    Posts: 1481

    Dec 30, 2012 4:10 PM GMT
    I have been doing crossfit for about two years, typically 4x per week, with great results in terms of strength and stamina. But I always felt a bit stiff after workouts despite rolling out and the occasional hot tub, something that's apparently not uncommon with crossfit. It seemed like a reasonable price to pay for good all-around strength.

    Then I wanted to restore and improve my agility, which as always been a bit of a problem for me, and I took up Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and scaled back crossfit to about 2x per week. But the stiffness after each crossfit workout gets seriously in the way of learning BJJ, in particluar when it comes to some of the more dynamic aspects like berimbolo. Now I'm seriously considering taking a break from crossfit for a few months just to work on agility and mobility in a BJJ / MMA context, although I am weary that I may lose some of my strength that I have worked so hard to build up.

    Any suggestions on how to square that circle?
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    Dec 31, 2012 4:27 AM GMT
    What kind of stretching are you doing? How much time do you spend?

    A significant part of my personal training time was spent learning how to stretch enough and correctly. Ok, a good portion of that was listening to my trainer "crack the whip" when I had the gall to arrive..stiff (the bad kind of stiff. Not the happy fun kind.)

    I was getting muscle cramps too. That turned out to be a vitamin D deficiency. icon_rolleyes.gif
  • mybud

    Posts: 11821

    Dec 31, 2012 4:51 AM GMT
    An Amino acid supplement helped me in my muscle recovery.
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    Dec 31, 2012 4:53 AM GMT
    Make sure you're hydrated and have potassium in your system. My muscles would lock up after long runs if I didn't have water and bananas in my body.
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    Dec 31, 2012 5:06 AM GMT
    It sounds like your recovery strategies are not aligned with your workout intensity. Workouts tear down muscle tissue. The recovery phase allows your body to rebuild in preparation for further work. Nutrition, sleep, foam rolling, massage, mobilization routines, stretching, supplements, hot/cold treatments and more can enhance your recovery.

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    Dec 31, 2012 5:09 AM GMT
    Stretching would be my totally amateur guess. I never had much help from foam rolling.
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    Dec 31, 2012 5:17 AM GMT
    Are you eating before and immediately after a workout? I am doing that and recovery time is drastically improved.
  • Whipmagic

    Posts: 1481

    Dec 31, 2012 3:05 PM GMT
    Thanks for the advice, guys. I could definitely use more stretching - we are doing a bit pre-workout at the crossfit box, and foam rolling afterwards, but preciously little at BJJ. The hot tub after a workout seems to help relive and prevent aches somewhat. Nutrition-wise, I have a protein-bar pre and and a shake post workout, and eat generally a paleo-inspired, but not strict diet. I am considering adding creatine. Any experiences with that? My hydration is good, I drink plenty of water during every workout.