The faster you can recover, the better you can train day in and day out! This also applies for those who have back to back day competitions. When you get to a certain point as an athlete everybody is training hard and doing the very most they can to be the best athlete they can. Therefore, every percentage of recovery will matter when you need it most!
As a regular Recovery Pump user I have found 4 ways in which the Recovery Pump unit is most useful for me.
1. Pre-activity: In the morning before training or before competitions I like to sit in my boots for 30 minutes. This helps wake up the muscles by bringing in fresh blood flow and stimulation. Because of the fast 45 second compression cycle, the Recovery Pump boots wake up your legs and prepare them for whatever activity is to come.
2. During activity: As a track cyclists and a sprinter, I am able to get an extremely large benefit from my recovery pump boots during training as well as competition. During training my efforts last anywhere from 8 to 45 seconds and then I have 20 minutes of rest in between each effort. For the first 10 minutes of my recovery I go directly into my Recovery Pump boots to help flush out any lactic build up as well as loosen any tight muscles. I have seen that this greatly decreases the amount of drop off from my first effort to my last. For example, instead of seeing a half second difference from my first effort to my last, now I see closer to .20-.30 drop off. In a sport where I can win and lose a race by .001 of a second, this is a very big difference!
3. Post activity: A few hours after I am done training I like to hop in my boots for one more hour. This promotes fresh blood flow to sore and fatigued muscles, which brings in more nutrients to speed up the recovery process. I would compare it to doing a cool-down ride or cool-down run after one's activity. This is also a great way to have some forced sitting down recovery when one might typically be inclined to doing other things around the house.
4. Travel: Personally, this is where the recovery pump unit really shines! As a traveling athlete the stress and fatigue of travel can be extremely heavy and greatly impair ones competitive performance. I carry my recovery pump unit with me in my carry-on bag (yes it makes it through TSA and yes it is that small!) and use it during my layovers and for 20 minutes directly after a flight. When we fly the cabin pressure is known to cause swelling and muscle fatigue, so the sooner you use it after your flight the better. When you use it for 20 minutes at your final destination, this is also great because instead of waiting down at baggage claim doing nothing, you are helping your legs feel fresh and your bags will be waiting for you as soon as you get down there. The recovery pump unit is also great to travel with because typically there is lots of downtime in your hotel room. This is another time where it will force you to be restful, making sure you are as primed and ready for your competition as possible.
BONUS!!! It is always fun to have friends and family hop in the boots while they are visiting. It is great for a photo opp and something they will always talk about :)