Inflammation is necessary if you hope to get anything tangible out of a
workout regimen. Hypertrophy, increased strength, and increased
stamina, are all the result of exercise. Your body gets stronger via
the inflammatory response to the stress of exercise and by rebuilding
and refortifying its tissue to deal with the potential for future
(similar) demands. Your body learns from the taxing effort to prepare
for "next time." An effective exercise session is an acute
stress on your body that initiates a temporary but powerful inflammatory
response. An effective exercise program is then composed of lots of
these acutely stressful training sessions broken up by periods of
recovery and rest.
If you track your training and plot it on a line graph... The
inflammatory responses to your training should resemble a series of
peaks and valleys. If you do not let your most recent exercise-induced
inflammatory response subside before exercising again, you will only
compound the inflammation (peaks). If you continue to compound said
spikes in the inflammatory response and do not allow time to
recover...the result can be chronic inflammation. That gives you a flat
line of constant inflammation. Remember... We want peaks and valleys! We
absolutely need ACUTE inflammation, however, CHRONIC inflammation is
what we all strive to eliminate or avoid.
Sow how do you do that? It's not really necessary to plot a graph. You
just need to pay attention to your body.
Exercise induced acute inflammatory response should resolve quickly.
Typically this takes one to three days. As long as you rest for a
couple days, you will recover and the inflammation will subside.
Inflammation becomes chronic when the stress is not removed. I.e. you
continue doing heavy bicep curls every single day.
All exercise has the potential to become chronic and induce a state of
chronic inflammation. Doing high-intensity CrossFit WODs every day
emphasizing the same task (pick one....Pull ups, Burpees, etc.) can lead
to chronic inflammation. Complete the exercises you enjoy but don't let
it become chronic.
Preventing Chronic Inflammation
Our coaches at Yucaipa CrossFit work to prevent chronic
inflammation. They vary the work out and avoid repeating the same tasks
several days in a row and they stress three days on and one day off. We
NEED that day off. Don't make the mistake of taking the day off of
CrossFit and spend your "rest day" running, swimming, or lifting.
Please let me know if you have a topic you would like me to expand on!