Wearing a fitness watch is a regular habit so I can track my exercise efforts and caloric intake. Since I have Been in the fitness industry for 30+ years I have always had good water drinking habits. Whenever I would have a body composition test performed, my hydration levels would show in need of improvement. Since all I drink is water, it was hard for me to understand why my hydration was lower than what it should be.
A friend of mine introduced me to a recovery tracker called Whoop. What makes this tracker different? The technology tracks your sleep habits and rates your body’s recovery process. Other trackers only measure your sleep quality and duration. Whoop tells me the percentage of the recovery along with personalized performance insights.
Recovery reflects how well the body is prepared to take on the strain. The measurement of your body’s rate of return to baseline after a stressor. Recovery is affected by:
- Psychological stress
- Sleep deprivation
Recovery is rated from a 0-100% scale with the Whoop device.
- Run Down (red)
- Okay to operate (yellow)
- Peaking Physically (green)
When your recovery is high your body is ready to take on Strain. When it’s low, you may be at greater risk of overtraining and/or injury. (click here for resource.)
I was shocked when my recovery percentages came in around the 30 & 40 percentile. No matter what I did my recovery rate was terrible. I would become frustrated and stop wearing it for a while and then start back up. All the while, irregular recovery rates were the result, sometimes in the single-digit percentile.
Surprisingly, one day, I woke up and checked my analytics to find my recovery in the 60 percentile. Wow, I was excited. The next day I was in the high 60 percentile. Each day it climbed more. Until one day I woke up with a 98% recovery. I was excited and started running through my routine to see if I could figure out what changes I made to my daily routine.
Then it hit me what it was. I stopped taking allergy medicine before bedtime. Could that be what was causing my poor recovery and if so, why?
One day, I received an email from Whoop that contained an article about the importance of hydration related to recovery. It all started to fall into place in my mind. Now granted, I don’t have any official studies proving my hypothesis. I can only share the changes that I made during that time compared to what I felt directly affected my recovery. So, I started researching allergy medicines to decipher which ones would reduce the effect on my hydration levels. Once I figured that out, I changed brands and started taking it the mornings on days I felt I needed it. My recovery leveled out and became more consistent.
Check out a previous blog that I worked on for other reasons “Why drinking water is important”