Sometimes after a hard Thai Boxing class for example containing long heavy-bag sessions or sparring (usually something consisting of intervals with explosive motions) I still feel tired or exhausted the next morning. It's hard to get up and have the feeling i take longer to wake up and be able to fully concentrate in the morning. Especially if i have not trained for a while.

The obvious conclusion is not to train too hard, sleep enough and take it easy after breaks.

Nevertheless it makes me think about what kind of techniques there are to aid recovery. Maybe things like a hot bath, certain minerals, etc...

  • The term is "recovery" and it's an extremely broad topic in sports exercise. Could you be more specific with the type of fatigue or mode of training? Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 19:51
  • Added some detail.
    – kioopi
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 19:57
  • This is a very good point. I wonder myself. Have you tried to take a day off after a very hard training and sleep well the night before just to see if lack of sleep alone is the factor causing the next day tiredness?
    – Lex
    Commented Mar 5, 2013 at 20:28
  • I gave my copy of Fit to Fight to a nephew. Really good if slightly scarey guide to being fit to fight amazon.co.uk/Fit-Fight-Manual-Intense-Training/dp/0953763803
    – Wudang
    Commented Mar 6, 2013 at 10:52
  • 1
    Several recent medical studies have shown that consuming beer improves recovery after physical exercise. Here is one of in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23690556. So, you need to drink more :) Commented Jun 12, 2014 at 14:29

4 Answers 4


While you are getting yourself into this state while practicing Thai Boxing this isn't a question that is specific to martial arts.

It is perfectly normal to feel this way after intense training. Your body needs to recover, recovery will usually consist mostly of sleep and nutrition.

Often after an intense workout the last thing you will feel like doing is eating properly (especially if you have to prepare the food), but it is important - your body needs protien for its rebuild, and it needs to replace various other minerals for effective functioning. While you're at it don't forget carbs, fluids and fat - yes you even need a regular intake of fat (on a controlled eating program many people miss this fact).

Sleep is equally important to nutrition, it is when your body does the majority of its repair.

This is just the basics and I encourage you to research the subject a lot more on the Physical Fitness site. Keep in mind that everybody is different and it's likely you will have to adapt the suggestions you find to your specific situation.

Paying attention to your recovery is also going to help you avoid over training. Keep a log of your results so you can keep track of what works and what doesn't.


The way to recover properly is to eat properly, sleep enough, train in a rational manner, and avoid drains on your recovery ability like alcohol and stress. The topic of recovery in a training program is vast, but that's the starting point.

It sounds like you are training hard in an abrupt or punctuated manner, instead of gradually building up to hard training. You should also check your sleep patterns. Your sleep should be regular, copious, and of a high quality.

Make sure you eat enough, on a regular schedule, with particular attention to sufficient protein and post-workout carbohydrate, avoiding foods that upset your stomach or disrupt your digestion. Likely candidates include fried or highly processed foods, candy, grains, legumes, and dairy.


A good trick to reduce soreness is to soak in cold water for 10 minutes after training, then soak hot. The cold constricts the blood vessels, flushing out the lactic acid, and the heat afterwards brings in blood to assist muscle repairs. I've generally found in my experience I feel 2/3rds less sore than when I don't do this.

As far as overall energy, get:

  1. Protein (for muscle repair)
  2. Carbohydrates (for energy that you just burned)
  3. Electrolytes - potassium, salt, B vitamins - these you lose quick when you sweat a lot.
  • Thx. Cold/Hot showers seem to help for me as well.
    – kioopi
    Commented Jan 8, 2014 at 8:00

I have a lot of success with recovery drink. Mine consists of protein powder, dextrose (sugar), BCAA's and L-Glutamine. The idea is to replace your glycogen stores after an intense exercise. You can probably skip bcaas and glutamine if you don't like too much powder in your life, the main thing is to get fast carbs and protein in 4:1 ratio.

You can also try chocolate milk if you don't want to drink powders, it has almost perfect protein/carb ratio (1:4), but is a little more expensive.

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