It is not uncommon for one to go off on a trail run and feel its gruelling after effects. After all, the varying terrain can sometimes be unforgiving on your limbs and muscles. The discomfort can become quite significant in some cases. By taking the proper steps you can actually spare yourself a lot of pain and you can speed up the recovery process. We teach you how to recover the right way after a trail run.
As we mentioned before in Warming-Up vs. Stretching, stretching should be done after your workout. A good stretch after your run will reduce tightness as it enhances elasticity and mobility in the joints and muscles. Stretching the legs and hip flexor muscles (muscles around the hip) after you run can aid in reducing muscle soreness.
More often than not it is difficult to fight off the urge to not have a late night in front of the television. This does not do the recovery process any favours. Rather have an early night. The body and brain need quality sleep to recover from the stresses that it has undergone from the trail run. Aim for between seven and nine hours of sleep.
Instead of only resting, engage in some active recovery. As Paris Phillipou mentioned in Active Recovery Workouts, “ It’s said to promote a better response from your body to help it recover better than if you simply take the day off.” Do something (between 20 and 30 minutes) like walking the dog, cycling, swimming but it should be done very lightly. You should not be out of breath. Only if you are walking with a limp, have a sharp pain or you feel like you are on the brink of a serious injury, should you purely rest.
Your body needs to be fed the right kind of fuel during recovery. Eating junk food is only going to hinder the recovery process. Conversely, eating cleanly is going to enhance the recovery process. You might want to check out the Paleo Diet in this regard.
Use a Stepping Machine
In order for you to get rid of the metabolic waste (occurs as a result of the trail run) from the muscles in the legs, get on a stepping machine. Use it for between 10 and 15 minutes at a slow pace. The up and down movement which emerges helps to extract the harmful fluids from the affected muscles.
Use a Foam Roller
Making use of a foam roller is an excellent way to catalyse the recovery process. It allows you to perform a self-massage. This eradicates tightness and it promotes blood circulation (essential for recovery). It will also break down lactic acid. A great foam roller worth getting is the REBEL Rumble-Roller.
Take an Ice Bath
It may not be a pleasant experience; however an ice bath is a godsend when it comes to alleviating muscle soreness, strain, as well as inflammation. The extreme temperature aids by preventing the diminishing of muscle tissue. In fact, the cold water and ice stimulate the muscle cells and repair the muscle tears.
What other methods would you recommend for recovery after a trail run?