This is a sponsored post.
Running isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, and if you’re new to running, you will probably be achier than someone that has been running marathons for the past decade. However, whether you’re new to running or a serious professional, it is important that you stretch and recover enough so that you don’t injure yourself.
There are so many theories around muscle recovery, and recovering after a long run, although these are the staple five that seem to be on every athlete’s list:
1. A Good Night’s Sleep
Sleep is vital after running a marathon or doing your first 5k. It is important that this time is used to heal our bodies and our muscles. Napping is great after a run, although you really shouldn’t nap for longer than 40 minutes as it could ruin your sleep in the evening.
If you’re a regular runner, then it is important to invest in a mattress that is both breathable and supportive, much like the Ocean Gel Memory and Reflex Foam Cool Orthopaedic LayGel Mattress from Happy Beds.
For other mattress suggestions, take a look at Happy Beds’ top five mattresses for muscle recovery.
2. Continue Walking
As soon as you pass your finishing line, you probably will want to just collapse and sit down for a second. However, it is important that you walk for a further five minutes to cool down. This will allow your muscles to get rid of any waste products that have built up during the run.
3. Eat and Hydrate
Eat well both before your run, and after your run. Athletes suggest eating more carbs before a marathon such as pasta, rice and potatoes so that it improves your energy levels.
However, eating foods such as bananas, which are full of potassium, and energy bars once you’ve completed your run will help you restore your energy throughout the day so that you aren’t completely slumped.
Also, make sure that you stay hydrated both during the run and after. Take small sips of water to avoid the risk of over-hydrating.
4. Get a Sports Massage
Massages are great, whether you’ve been for a run or not. Sports therapists know exactly what areas to target, if you’re a serious runner, and they will be able to recognise any tight muscles that need loosening.
These massages can sometimes be expensive though, so if you can’t come to terms with the price, then just give your hamstrings and calves some light rubbing.
5. Bath in Cold Water
This one is probably best for the brave, but have you ever seen an athlete get into a pool of cold water straight after they do some sort of exercise? This is because the cold water can seriously help relieve sore muscles both there and then, and the following day.
Of course, if you’re not brave enough for this, then wrap some ice or some frozen peas (in their packet of course) in a tea towel and place on the muscles you think you’ve worked the most. Never put ice directly on your skin!