Even though Edmonton sporting events have been cancelled this summer it’s still ok to get out and run the river valley! Feel the need to compete? There are lots of virtual races and running groups available, check out our last running blog for the list.
K, we have shocking news. The most important part of running is recovery. Why?
“If you do not rest voluntarily, your body will force you to rest--- by fatigue, illness, injury, staleness or burnout. “
- John Stanton, Running: The Complete Guide to Building Your Running Program
We have all skipped that warm up stretch and cool down after a long run. And we have all felt sore and tired and stiff afterwards. But when you continually push your body and do not allow time for it to adapt and recover it will cause more long term damage and could delay your training and cause injury. So we wanted to share what we’ve learned about recovery and some tips on how to recover quicker.
- Warm-Up: The biggest and best tip we’ve learned is to always do a warm up (stretch and some strength) for about 15-30 mins. Jumping jacks, push-ups, planks, get your heart rate up and your blood flowing. After this warm up you will know how you are feeling. Do you feel tired? Sore? This is an indicator that you need more time to recover. Take it easy, run less kms or even take a rest day.
- Cool Down: Walking at the end of your run will speed up your recovery. Walk for at least 15 min after. Walking on your days off, or even adding it into your day by walking to the grocery store burns fat and increases blood flow which in turn aids in recovery. And a massage every once and a while can do wonders, even if it's from your running partner, wink!
- Anti-Inflammatory’s:Turmeric (Curcumin) is your best friend! It’s a bioactive substance scientifically proven to suppress many molecules that play major roles in inflammation. Add this to warm or cold drinks, sweet or savoury foods.
Turmeric Tonic: Boil fresh turmeric, ginger, honey and water in a pot, let simmer for 20 mins. Then cool and add fresh lemon juice. Add all ingredients into a jug or glass jar. Then chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour. Remove and pour into a glass, top it off with sparkling water. It’s refreshing and delicious!
- Eat & Drink: Replace your glucose, choose healthy sources of glucose like fruit, energy bites made with dates, and honey. Replace your electrolytes (sodium, chloride, potassium, magnesium, & calcium) with citrus, water, bananas, salt, green leafy vegetables & sweet potatoes. And eat healthy fats and proteins like nuts, avocados, and salmon. And of course drink lots of water! Duh.
- Sleep: Get your zzzz’s! 7-8 hours a day allows your body to rest and repair. Lack of sleep can impair muscle healing, impair body temperature regulation and impair your decision making ability. Tips on sleeping better- go to sleep at the same time every day, put your phone on airplane mode at night. Avoid food, alcohol, caffeine at least 3-4 hours before bed. Turn off screens and the TV. And make your bed an oasis, so comfy and cozy you can’t wait to crawl in.
Here's our latest chill hip hop mix! It's perfect for doing some recovery stretches.
Here are some good resources on everything to do with running and recovery:
- Running: The Complete Guide to Building Your Running Program by John Stanton Founder of The Running Room. This book is your COMPLETE guide to running. It answers every question you might have about training, running, gear and recovery. A must read for every runner!
- The Uphill Athlete- featuring Kilian Jornet This book is a great read for anyone interested in trail, mountain and ultra running. It also explains the biological side of running and lots of information about overtraining and recovery.
- The Ginger Runner- Podcast & Youtube This podcast has great gear reviews, interviews with elite athletes and lots of inspiring topics and stories from some of the biggest names in the running community.
So get out there and run, but also get some R n R baby!