I’m about five weeks out from the marathon, and I would say that after three or four days I felt basically back to normal.
My knees did seem to bug me for a week or two after. I’ve been on a couple easy three mile runs, and my knees were definitely cranky that first run after.
So, here’s a list of things I’ve been doing to “recover”:
+ Epsom salt baths and just hot baths in general are my go to “feel better” activity for every situation. Have a cold? Take a bath. On your period? Take a bath?
+ Using my heat pad or a bag of ice on my knees and ankles. Towards the end of training, I got much better about icing my knees thankfully. But there was a lot of heat and cold applied to my knees, ankles and feet for the two weeks following my race.
+ Stretching and rolling out. Boy oh boy can I get stiff, especially now that we’re into the colder months. But before running as well as after I’ve tried to do a better job at stretching and then rolling out my back, hips and legs.
+ Yoga is the perfect exercise for all seasons, but especially in the winter. I’ve been working on doing exercise a few mornings a week, and I’ll definitely be incorporating it into my training plan next time around.
+ Something I started doing a few days after my marathon was walking places. If I was going to a coffee shop, the library, or anything less than a 20 minute walk away I would skip the car and bike and walk there to work out some of the kinks and pains. And I’ve continued doing this as a little break in the day to get outside.
+ I’m not always the greatest at this but the two days leading up to my marathon and ever since I’ve made it a point each day to make sure I’m staying hydrated.
+ While I woke up the day after my race feeling like I’d been hit by a train I found that the week following my race I was a bit knackered. So, I made it a point to make sure I was getting enough, if not more than enough sleep afterwords.
+ And the final little thing I’ve been doing to recover but also keep inspired is watching little documentaries on YouTube about running. And I’ve found watching videos on ultra-marathons quite fascinating. While I can’t imagine running 50-100 miles I’m amazed and inspired by those who do.
In the end it’s really not a big feat to recover from running a marathon. You just have to make sure you’re taking care of your body, take a few days to slow down. Refuel your body with food and water and stay inspired for the next one!