When prepping for a century bike ride, whether it be your first or your fifth, it is common to experience tight and sore muscles. Keeping to your training regimen, even on active rest days, can be difficult when sidelined with any cramping or soreness. Keep your motivation high and your muscles feeling strong with some preventative massage. The benefits of this practice will not only help improve your daily training sessions, but it will also heal you mentally.
All experienced riders know that an integral part of training is stepping down from the bike. These mental and physical breaks are a key to giving your muscles time to repair. A strict training regimen can push push your body to the limit, causing overtraining and burnout. Take planned breaks from your long rides to decrease your chances for injury. Enhance the benefits of planned rest by adding massage to your daily practice.
Massage improves blood flow and circulation, which can be key to releasing some of the muscle soreness caused by inflammation. When riding, your muscles experience small tears that are important for growth, but can often be uncomfortable. Using a portable massager, give your muscles a boost by removing that build up of lactic acid in your system and reduce any adhesions or knots that may make your movements less efficient.
Massage improves not only your muscle function and increases the regeneration of muscle, but it also can benefit your mental state. Rest decreases the levels of cortisol that rise due to stress or physical strain. A regular massage can reduce these high levels of cortisol, keeping both your mind and your body prepped for the next days workout. Purchasing a portable massager is an inexpensive way to give your body and your mind the rest it needs.
When massaging, either before or after a ride, be sure to focus on the parts of your body that see the most action. This daily impact to your kinetic chain starts with the feet. Pay attention to each small area of your foot, the muscles and bones are both delicate and dependent on one another. Begin daily massage with the soles of your feet, and work your way towards your ankles. The Moji 360 foot massager contours perfectly to the foot, allowing you to release any knots you may have. When massaging your legs, be sure to pay attention to each muscle group involved in the riding movement – the dorsiflexors, plantar flexors, calves, hip flexors, glutes, hamstrings and quads.