Recovery...something everyone needs to learn for endurance.
And to keep running, injury free & happy.
Stress, recover & rebuild...the cycle we should all follow to see progress.
This winter, I sustained a high mileage base (for me) and ran a marathon & experienced the fastest recovery I had imagined. It got me thinking...why...what did I do right?
I don't know.
There are a handful of things that may have contributed, so I thought I'd share my wondrous knowledge :)
No post race alcohol :( This is really hard for me. Races are usually on a Sat/Sun, and I would love to relax at dinner with a couple glasses of wine. Nope. No longer after a race. The day of my marathon, we had family obligations and I didn't have my celebratory wine. Result? Next day, no dehydration, that fluid in my body wasn't working towards ridding my body of alcohol, it was focused on rehydrating my whole, worn down body to help repair. Sad to say, my celebratory wine will wait until days after my long runs & races.
Water...this is a no brainer. Hello. Drink lots of water for days.
Compression socks. LIVED in them for 3 days. Even slept in them. Yes, it helps.
Vega Recovery. I drink this stuff after really taxing runs & races. Could be in my mind, but this stuff makes me feel like a million bucks afterwards. I've started to crave it after hard workouts.
Foam roll that $hit. Really. I know this has been labeled as trendy lately. Alot of sports med doctors have said it's pointless. Well, it helps me. And, I'm sticking with it. I foam roll 2x a day when I have high mileage. It takes minutes. Just do it while you're watching tv or checking IG of FB on your phone. Or your daughter does headstands in the background :)
Active recovery. Walk the day after your marathon. Take an hour stroll and enjoy your surroundings. Also, the day OF your marathon, be sure to move around alot. Don't just lay on the couch or in bed and become a stiff corpse :)
Stretch! After you foam roll, stretch. Just do it.
Heating pad. I'm a fan of heat more than ice. I heat the crap out of my legs. My theory is it promotes new blood flow to promote healing. That and it feels good, so I'm sticking with it. Ice just makes me stiff up and I've seen NO benefits in icing. ever. So, heat it is.
New shoes. I'm a freak about making sure I don't wear my shoes out. I usually only run 300 miles in them, so I go through pairs & pairs quickly. Find the kind you like then go to runningwarehouse.com and search for discontinued models and stock up. A $120 pair of shoes, you can usually find for $60-$70 if you buy the previous model. Buy them when they're on sale and you have them when you need them.
Remember, run, rebuild, and rest :)