Post-Race Recovery

I had a great race at the GW Parkway Classic last weekend, and I’ve had a great post-race recovery week.

I kick-started my recovery by taking an ice bath when I got home. As much as I wish Epsom salt baths worked as well for me, they just don’t. I took a warm Epsom salt bath after the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler and was hobbled by delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) the next day. I took an ice bath after the GW Parkway Classic and noticed that my quads didn’t even complain about walking down the stairs.

On Monday, I opted for a “triple threat” workout to help my legs recover:

  1. 20 minutes on the elliptical (forward/reverse intervals)
  2. 25 minutes with Rodney Yee (Forward Bends program)
  3. 10 minutes core work with Cathe (from my X-Train DVD)

I made Tuesday a strength day, and did my ITB Rehab routine, my super sets routine, and 6 minutes of planks (4 sets of 30-second planks front/left/right).

20130425-214806.jpgI need my interval timer app to lead me through those planks!

On Wednesday, I was in Chicago for a business trip, and went for a run along one of my favorite routes from the Navy Pier out to the planetarium.


The planetarium is at the point in the distance.
I’m not used to being able to see my destination 2 miles away!


It was a bit rainy, and windy, but I didn’t mind.
I love the Chicago skyline!

I ended up covering about 5.6 miles in 52 minutes, with most of my splits at a 9:25 pace–clearly my legs were ready to be running again.

On Thursday I was back home and did my strength routine again, doing Cathe’s core routine instead of planks.

Today I plan to do an easy run before work, and tomorrow I may do some speed work at the track–nothing fancy, just some 400M repeats for fun. The next race on my calendar is the Lawyers Have Heart 10K in June, so I am going to spend the next few weeks focusing on speed instead of distance.

How do you recover from a race?

How long does it usually take to get back to your usual workout routine?

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8 Responses to Post-Race Recovery

  1. Jen says:

    I tend to recover from a marathon with a day or 2 of walking/biking then easy running the rest of the week and back to "normal" 🙂

  2. Marcia says:

    Ah my beloved Chicago skyline! I have run that route many times. Sorry the weather wasn't better. We are struggling with lack of spring. I recover from a race with yoga….although my balance sucks post race. No ice baths for me since Marine Corps Marathon and that is quite alright! : )

  3. Jill Conyers says:

    I love Chicago! It's my second (San Francisco is first) all time favorite city! My recovery is rest, stretch and foam rolling. That's about it. I bought epsom salt to try and I've thought about ice baths but can't bring myself to do it. That may change this weekend after my first 50K 🙂

  4. Lisa bishop says:

    How long are your ice baths for.?

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  6. Every time I try to incorporate speed into my workouts I seem to be really sore. So I haven’t been doing much of that lately. Sorry to hear the espom salt baths don’t work for you. I love them. They are so relaxing. I do not like ice baths.
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  7. April at RunTheGreatWideSomewhere says:

    Great post, post race recovery is so important! I love Rodney Yee. He is so relaxing to listen to! And Chicago is one of my favorite cities! Thanks for linking up with us today.

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