Vacation Mobility: Working The Travel Bugs Out
I just got back from Ireland and between being on a plane for six hours, driving a couple hours to see the sights of Ireland. My lower back, SI joint, hamstrings etc. all felt very tight. Because most people, myself included, when on vacation have a varied training schedule, alcohol consumption tends to increase. The body also put in different positions than it is accustomed to as a result of the travel. On vacation the tendency is to hydrate and move less, both of which are contributing factors to decreasing mobility and increasing risk of injury. Luckily, I have some exercises that can be done anywhere to help with mobility and overall just feeling better. These exercises should be done in conjunction with being conscientious of your hydration level. Taking your Max Effort Post Workout is a great way to stay on top of your hydration. I highly recommend taking the post workout before bed after a long day of drinking. The glutamine has a fascinating hydrating effect that many people overlook. Not only does the Post Workout help recover from exercise but it is also an anti-hangover tool!
Movement 1: Get a softball or baseball and roll out over your lower back, glutes, IT band and really try to work those spots, grinding out the knots and rough areas. Generating more blood flow to the area will help loosen it up and relieve the pain associated with it. Spend a couple minutes each side working through it.
Movement 2: Once you have your low-back and gluten loosened up, sit in a deep squat for 3-5 minutes. Just hang out down in the bottom, allowing your whole body to decompress. Now that you have some pressure to that, simply allowing your bodyweight to stretch the tissue is a great way to retrieve the mobility lost during travel. The deep squat position is really the most natural position for the body to be in. As a child we were all able to enter this position perfectly with no effort, but as we age it has become more difficult.
Movement 3: The couch stretch is the final movement to loosen up your quads. It can be done with the couch, a boulder, your car, really anything that you can put your leg up against.
Of course there are many more exercises to increase mobility, but these three are quick, easy and do not require any equipment that is not readily available to you. These exercises will help you recover from all the travel and most importantly, make you feel better while you’re drinking all those adult beverages at the pub or at the beach.
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