The best ways to reduce recovery time between runs
One of the best ways to get exercise without having to commit to heavy equipment or changing gym schedules is running. Running has numerous health benefits. However, it’s easy to feel worn out and sore after a long run. Whether you’re a seasoned runner or are new to the experience, here are some tips to help your body bounce back faster and feel ready for your next run sooner.
Warm Up and Cool Down:
It’s crucial to stretch before and after your workout to avoid extra strain on your muscles. A simple 10-15 minute stretching session before you begin running will prep your body for the upcoming strain. An equal amount of stretching afterwards will help your muscles to relax back to their normal resting state without risking a shock.
An ideal stretch to warm up or cool down will focus on the core muscles you’ll use during your run. Try focusing on your quads, hamstrings, hip flexors, glutes, calf muscles, and ankles.
Massage Your Muscles:
Who doesn’t love a nice massage on any day? After intense exercise, it feels incredible to work out any kinks and stiffness that you may be feeling. Even easier than booking an appointment in-person is using a handheld massage gun. Not only can you focus the pressure wherever you need some extra attention, but you can utilize the device at any time and fit a massage into any busy schedule.
Different models of massage guns come with varying head attachments and pulsation levels to get the perfect massage every time. Since it is also only a one-time payment, using one of these devices is far more cost-effective than booking a professional masseuse every time you’re feeling sore.
Make sure you’re drinking an appropriate amount of water both before and after your run. If you plan on a long run, perhaps bring a water bottle along with you. As you exercise, your body will work up a sweat and begin stretching different muscles in your body. If not properly hydrated, you’ll feel tired faster, and your muscles will take longer to bounce back to normal.
After your run, you’ll want to replenish your electrolytes as well with Gatorade, Powerade, or another electrolyte-packed drink.
Eat Something Healthy:
Having a small snack directly after your run will help your body to replenish some nutrients it used during your workout. It’s also helpful to eat a well-balanced meal one to two hours after your run to help your muscles rebuild themselves. An ideal meal will have plenty of protein, carbohydrates, and hearty vegetables.
If you’re planning on exercising for an extended period, granola or fresh fruit can be an easy way to get a little energy boost during your workout.
Soak in the Tub:
Whether you want to take the plunge in an ice bath to reduce potential inflammation or soak in a hot tub to relax your muscles, both options will have excellent effects on your body post-run. Placing Epsom salts in a hot bath can be incredibly relaxing. It reduces swelling, addresses general soreness, and provides a little aromatherapy as well.
Running can have significant benefits and lead to a longer life. It is an effective and cost-efficient way to exercise, but the activity-related soreness can be a discouraging factor for deciding how frequently to run. With these easy tips on caring for your body before and after a run, it’s super easy to avoid strain and help your body feel its best!
posted Tuesday September 15th
by Colorado runner