My Favorite Recovery Tips

Yesterday I went on my long run – 6.7 miles in 63:34 min – and I forgot to stretch afterwards.  By the time I made it home, I was feeling the pain.  Needless to say, BioFreeze is my best friend right now.

4:25run

If you’re anything like me, you have read up on recovery tips for post workouts or long runs. …did I religiously follow them? Not at first. It was not doing these things that got me to realize how much I needed to do these things.  Here are a few of my favorites that I found actually work for me.

1.  Stretch!  I know this may seem like common sense, but sometimes I am so tired after a workout, I just want to get out of the gym, and head home for a shower, so I don’t stretch.  Sometimes I also just forget, like yesterday.  When I do skip out on my post-run stretch, I always notice a difference.

2.  Hydrate!  When I’m running, the last thing on my mind (believe it or not) is water.  Many times I find myself only opening my water bottle once I complete my run.  I hate taking water breaks when I’m already in my rhythm.  To ensure that I am getting enough water after a run, I always fill up my water bottle right before I leave the gym, and make sure I drink the whole bottle on my way home.  And then when I get home, I grab a full glass of ice water.

3.  Eat protein & carbs within an hour after a workout.  Yet, another tip I’m sure you’ve all heard of before.  For a while, I didn’t take this rule too seriously.  I started to notice a difference in how I felt later in the day and even the next day based on whether I had a proper post-run snack.  I started to make it an everyday habit, and the soreness I used to feel the next morning has been noticeably reduced.   My favorite post-workout snacks are greek yogurt with granola or fruit or egg whites with a piece of fruit like an apple or banana.

These few tips are the ones I found to be most crucial for me.  Whether or not I follow them makes a difference in how I feel after a workout.  When I’m not sore from my run the day before, I’m at my optimal performance level for my next workout.

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