Happy Tuesday! SO we’re officially back to winter this week (or well until at least probably March it looks like…). Mid 20’s are the high and negatives/ very low single digits until infinity. This is also my last PEAK mileage week before recovery next week. So while I know I’ll be super busy (and also on the treadmill more than usual), I know that spring is just around the corner AND that it doesn’t matter where I get my runs in, just that I still put in the effort. I’m ready to tackle the challenge. Just hoping it stays remotely warm-enough on Friday morning for my first 20 miler of this training cycle! Wohooo. I’ll be getting 36 miles over Thursday/Friday and am switching up my rest day to Sunday this week (normally I have it on Wednesdays) because it just works better with my work schedule this week. Here’s to hoping I don’t need to be THIS bundled up for my run on Friday!
With my increased mileage, I’ve really been focusing on recovery. Whether you believe in active recovery days or complete rest days (I’m somewhere in between normally- I like to do something, but nothing that requires much effort). Some of my favorite ways to spend a recovery are swimming, getting a massage, or doing yoga.
When you train hard, your body begins to breakdown to adapt to the continual stress. When you recover, it gives your body time to repair those muscles. When you don’t take recovery seriously, you put yourself at an increased risk of injury, illness, or burn-out (among other things). Luckily there ARE things you can be doing to help speed-up that recovery process (and help your body get ready for your next run or big workout)! I also found a lot of great information in this article by Runner’s World.
Here are some of my favorite ways to boost recovery (whether post-run or ON my recovery days)!
-Drink a lot of water and replenish any electrolytes. Think of water as the means to turn your muscles from ice to snow. It gives them their fluidity after you’ve been running with them for an extended period of time.
-Refuel with real food. 4 to 1 ratio of carbs to protein. I’ve been focusing more and more on refueling immediately after my run and I think it helps so much. You really need to plan-ahead post-run, but doing-so will help your body recover and decrease your risk of any sort of injury or illness. Dark Chocolate Almond Milk is one of my favorites or PB on Toast with Honey and blueberries or bananas.
-Epsom Salt Bath or Ice Bath. Ice baths are amazing to decrease the inflammation in your muscles, but honestly I have such a hard time taking one (I’m always SO cold). So, I generally apply ice to any problem areas I have (normally my plantar & knee) and will then hop into a hot Epsom Salt Bath after stretching.
-Stretch! I used to overlook stretching (I know, I know…shame on me), but now I take a few minutes to stretch post-run (no matter whether I’m running late or not!) and also stretch before going to bed every night. I haven’t had one niggle this training cycle thus far, so I think it’s helping!
-Yoga. I love JasYoga (they have a few free videos on YouTube that I love) and their running-specific videos.
-Get out for a walk. Ultrarunner extraordinaire, Karl Meltzer, takes his dogs for an hour long walk every morning (even post 100 mile races!). I think that says the importance of getting out and moving everyday even for an hour.
What are some tips you’d add?
What are YOUR favorite ways to spend a recovery day?