Having just about come down from the shock of getting a PB in the Madrid Marathon I thought I’d share my insight into recovering after a marathon. I have to admit I’m possibly my body’s own worst enemy when it comes to recovering (i.e. I’m not great at sitting around & doing nothing)! But when you’ve put yourself through your paces & meandered 26.2 miles in the heat you need to take a time out, don’t rush back in — you’ll only learn the hard way by getting an injury and put yourself out for longer!
1. Take an ice bath
Yes it might sound horrendous! But trust me, it’s so worth it. Even if you can only bear it for a minute or two your muscles will thank you for it in the morning.
2. Get a light massage
Some people have the urgency to get a ‘sports’ massage post-marathon, but the scrutiny may do you more harm than good. By all means get a massage, but just take it easy.
3. Go for a run
For some this is easier said than done. It’s something to put into action two days after running your Marathon, yes you need rest – but you also need to keep moving. Your body has got used to training, don’t let it slip away, getting the bloody flowing again at a very gentle jog will help — I promise!
4. Eat lots of fruit & protein
The natural sugar and carbohydrates in the fruit will do you a world of good and give your body what it needs to recover properly, you burnt a serious number of calories pounding the streets now it’s time to take back on what your body needs to repair and avoid any damage. This is particularly key when taking on an ultra-marathon.
If you can’t succumb to a run just yet, get out there and go for a swim or a cycle. Keeping your legs moving with low-impact exercise will speed up the recovery process. Don’t do anything too strenuous, but don’t just stop completely! That’ll do you more harm than good!
If you’re just starting out check out my top tips for new runners.
The Habit Hunter x