When we first started CrossFit, we were all in. We kept going back, day after day, despite how sore we were, how much our muscles ached. We had discovered that although it was hard to get started initially, moving usually helped the soreness subside a bit.
Over the past few months, we’ve been so busy, we weren’t going as routinely as we should have been. We were still there about 3 times a week, but really should be hitting about 5 WODs a week. Hubs has been traveling a lot for work, and there’s just something about a king sized bed and a warm snuggly pup at 5:30am that makes it hard to get out of bed by yourself to go work out.
Since the spring wedding season has started to slow down, I’ve been back at it, trying to hit that 5 days a week mark. (I’ve also been trying out Zone eating, which is a crazy PITA, but I’ll save that for another day!)
When you go to CrossFit 5 days a week, your body takes a beating, no doubt about it. It’s definitely important to listen and know when you need to rest. A lot of the time, though, you just need some tools to help get you “over the hump,” so to speak. When the going gets tough (literally!), try these CrossFit recovery tools to help get your body back on track and back into tomorrow’s WOD. If nothing else, they will help with the beating your body and muscles take with such strenuous workouts.
The best part is, you can literally get everything here for less than $100! That’s like, what, half a month’s membership? 😀
Back in the day, I thought the Magic Eraser might really be magic. It might still be, but this stuff is legit magic. It won’t make a quarter appear behind your ear, but it can take care of pretty much anything else. Sunburn, flyaway or static hair, eye makeup removal….and most importantly, intense skin moisturizer. When your hands are dry, cracked, and torn from all the chalk you have to use in class to keep your grip dry, slap some of this stuff on it. It looks like Vaseline (no joke) but your skin will drink it up and your calluses will thank you. Worth every penny.
Two words: hand maintenance. I know, it’s gross to clip dead skin off your hands. But which is grosser–clipping dead skin off your hands in the privacy of your own bathroom, or ripping your hand wide open during a WOD, blood running down your fingers, and pieces of skin flapping around? (And then subsequently screaming when you get in the shower after and the hot water hits that wide open wound?) As gross as it is, it’s got to be done. CrossFit uses your body as a machine. You have to take care of any other machine to keep it in prime working order, and nothing is different here. Clip those calluses when they start to get too thick. I’m not gonna give you a tutorial, but I’m sure if you ask Google, someone out there thought it was a good idea to write about how to clip your hand calluses. Better them than me.
Forget Bengay. This stuff right here is the JAM. It can be a little thick and tough to get out of the jar, but keep in mind once it warms up in your hand it softens, and a little will go a long way. Make sure you get the “non-staining” version–the other one is red, and will stain your clothes and your sheets red if they touch your skin before it dries and soaks in. It has a cooling effect that helps relax the muscles, and is so nice to put on after a tough WOD.
I’m sure your box has these for you to use before and after class. Do you use it? Maybe. Enough? Probably not. The 36 inch ones are unwieldy, but grab a 12 or an 18 inch. Ours lives in the living room, and I will often grab it and roll out while we are watching TV or just sitting around hanging out. (Warning: if you do this when you have non-CrossFit company over, you might get strange looks. Just sayin.’
Again, they probably have these at your gym. For $5-6 you can have one at home. It’s so worth it. You can use it in the usual ways (lay your shoulder on it and move your arm around, sit on it and roll your glutes, put your calf on it and dig into those muscles). You can do so much more with it though. I stand up at a desk most of the day, and I’ll keep this under my feet, switching out feet every so often. Not only does this give me a foot massage, it helps keep my legs from hurting, and is actually loosening up your hamstrings at the same time! For real. Try this at home: Reach down and try and touch your toes, or the floor, or as close as you can get. Then stand up and roll each foot on the lacrosse ball for 2 minutes. Get into the arch, the outside edge, dig into the sticky places. Then reach down for your toes again. Guarantee you will be able to reach further down than you did the first time. Magic! I also take it on airplane rides, and put it on my lower back when I start to get uncomfortable from sitting. This little lacrosse ball is a powerhouse, I tell you!
Ok, this one you’re not going to use at home. (Well, you might, depending on what it is you’re doing I guess!) That being said, when your hands rip, have some of this stuff around. We did Murph on Memorial Day and I pulled out a roll of this stuff. By the end of class, the whole roll was gone. Everyone needed it. If you have the time to plan ahead, I recommend a bandaid underneath, so it doesn’t actually stick to the wound itself. That being said, if you’re in a pinch, you can stick it right on there. (No, it doesn’t feel good coming off. But it feels better than continuing to rip your hand open wider and wider and making it worse!) Wrap it around individual fingers or around your palm in places you typically rip before you get into a high volume workout. Anything with lots of pull ups, T2B, kettlebell swings, or anything where your grip tends to get slippery.
That’s it for my CrossFit recovery toolbag. What are your favorite recovery tools? Comment below!