HOW TO REST PROPERLY AFTER A RACE
Besides a proper diet, another key factor for a quick and healthy recovery is rest. Your body deserves a few days of rest before you head out on the road again. The longer the distance of your race, the longer you should take time off. Jumping right into training too soon could increase your chance of injury. The general rule of thumb is to allow your body 1-3 days off for the half-marathon distance. A common concern for runners is the idea of losing endurance or fitness if they take time off – which is a total myth. A few days of rest is exactly what your body needs post race!
A great massage from a foot doctor would be perfect as well the days after the race. Some runners also swear by their ice bath right after to decrease post-race pain and soreness. I personally love a Epsom salt (aka magnesium sulfate) bath. Do what feels good for you to allow a natural cycle of recovery to the overworked parts of your body.
RACE RECOVERY TIPS FOR YOUR MIND
Believe it or not, your mind is an important part of your race recovery as well. Leaving a long period of hard training behind you can have you feeling a bit lost. Long-distance runners might know the feeling of a light post-race depression. Why? Your body experiences a huge dip in endorphins from the time you have crossed the finish line. Especially after running a marathon, runners often find themselves missing the time they spent preparing for the race of a lifetime. These emotions are normal and will go away eventually. How can you minimize these feelings? Celebrate your victory, cherish your finish and be proud of yourself!