Running the marathon this weekend? You’re gunna need these essential marathon recovery tips from PT, Georgie Okell!
After a marathon, especially if it’s your first one, you’re going to feel it. Our bodies go through a lot – physically the joints take a hit from all the pavement pounding, and your muscles will accrue small tears in them through overuse, but also in new muscles that your body starts to recruit once the usual ones get tired and sore. You will likely be dehydrated post marathon and have a dodgy tummy. Your immune system takes a knock, and on the surface, you’ll probably have blistered feet and some chafing marks, maybe a missing toenail or two. For me, I always find the emotional comedown worse than the physical one, marathons play havoc with my hormones. But the good news is there’s plenty to be done about all of these things to soften the blow.
Marathon recovery tips:
Take a magnesium salts bath the day after the race and if you can, have a stretch afterwards.
A couple of ibuprofen will help with your inflamed muscles, but turmeric is a great anti-inflammatory too, whack it into a healthy curry or stir into some warm almond milk and honey.
Drink plenty of water, ideally during the race but also as soon as you’re done and the next day.
Sleep is such an important recovery tool, as is hydration, so although a couple of beers after the race are very well deserved and to be enjoyed, try not to stay out on the sauce until late- get at least 8 hours and keep a glass of water by your bed.
In the week following the marathon, try to get a cycle or swim in, or a big walk – the endorphins will be great to counter the marathon come down and it’s important to get those muscles warmed up and working again
The immune system takes a knock during the marathon, so in the few days post-race get plenty of healthy herbal teas in. Lemon and honey or ones involving echinacea are particularly beneficial. Straight after the race, get out of your damp sweaty race kit as soon as you can and into something warm, although obviously keep your medal on!
Post-race blues are real. Surround yourself with good food and good company the day after the race if you can, rather than lying in bed overthinking your aches and pains and snacking on rubbish.
Georgie Okell is supporting #TeamMacmillan London Marathon runners and is encouraging others to take on a challenge to raise funds that enable Macmillan to be right there with people living with cancer. www.macmillan.org.uk/challenge
If you didn’t manage to get a place in the London Marathon there are still lots of other challenges you can do to raise money for Macmillan. Let’s Do This has compiled a full list of all the marathons in the UK.
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