How to Recover After a Fight

Whether you’re an MMA fighter, a boxer, or just ended up in a fight with a guy at the bar after having a little too much to drink, you’re probably not feeling so great. Fighting can be fatal, with some of the latest data revealing that between 1890 and 2019, there were 1,876 boxers who died as a direct result of their injuries.

Whether you just managed to get out of it before ending up in the hospital or scored a win, recovering can take time even if you didn’t suffer from severe injuries. In fact, it might be weeks or even months until you’ve fully recovered. So how can you speed that time up, recovering as quickly as possible so you can enjoy well-being once again? Consider these tips.

Drink Lots of Water

Your muscles are dehydrated after any fight and hydration is essential for all cellular functions, yet on average, the body loses three to four liters of water a day just by performing basic tasks. Just imagine how much you’ve lost after such an intense experience and you’ll understand the reason behind the need to drink a lot of water. When you’re adequately hydrated, water helps to deliver nutrients to the cells while removing waste. It’s also necessary for the recovery process.

Optimal Nutrition

Nutrition is one of the most important factors for recovery following a fight or any intense workout. Your body is depleted of nutrients that are necessary for healing, including fats that help organs recover and aid in brain functioning, while carbs can help restore energy, and protein plays a big part in muscle recovery. Eat plenty of healthy foods, ideally whole foods from the Earth with meals that are rich in proteins, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, while avoiding processed junk. 

An Icy Plunge

To soothe pain, reduce swelling, and help your muscles recover faster, take an ice bath. It’s something that’s long-been used among athletes to recover faster after a competition or tough workout. It directly targets inflammation by changing the way blood flows, especially following an injury. As soon as you submerge yourself in the ice water, your blood vessels will begin to contract. Then, when you get out they’ll start to dilate gradually which helps to regulate proper blood flow while encouraging faster healing. 

It might be painful right when you get in, but in the long run, you’ll be able to cope with the pain much better and heal much quicker than using an ice pack. An ice bath is able to treat a large area, whereas that ice pack can only address a small part of your body. After a fight, you’re probably going to need something that can cover a much larger area. Be sure to do it as soon as possible afterward. 

Plenty of Rest

Just like any injury, your body needs rest in order to help it heal and to replenish energy, which has most likely been depleted significantly after a fight. A lack of sleep will slow down the muscle recovery process and levels of the stress hormone cortisol will rise which also has a negative impact on recovery. Aim to get nine to ten hours of quality sleep each night, at least until you recover.