Post Great North Run: Half Marathon Recovery

So, here we are two days on from the Great North Run. By all accounts it was a fantastic day, and they were even able to identify the millionth finisher. If you did finish the run, then you’re probably in a world of pain right now! Following on from last post, here are some hints to help you get those legs back to normal so you can climb the stairs at a normal speed again:

 

  1. Stay hydrated. Don’t forget to keep drinking now that the race is over – it’s important to replenish your fluid intake, and focus on drinks that will replace your electrolytes too. And by all means have a post-run beer because, well, why the heck not? You’ve just run 13.1 miles. But don’t forget the water too.
  2. Over the next few days, make sure you rest to give your muscles a chance to recover. Don’t immediately jump back into your exercise routine, but enjoy being able to catch up on your TV. If you’re looking for something, I can recommend Orange is the New Black as the perfect companion for your post-run muscle rest.
  3. Eat Smart. Before the race, you probably stressed about getting the right amount of carbs: post-race, you should still focus on carbs, but also consider getting the right amount of protein.  Ideally, a protein shake just after you finish will help your muscle repair, but you can continue this for the days following the race too.
  4. Foam roll. I am not so good practicing what I preach with this one, but rolling your legs will give you a DIY sports massage. You can use the roller all over your body, but I personally focus on my calves, IT band and quads. Roll slowly over the area you’re focusing on, and when you feel a twinge, hold the roller there for a little bit. Beware that it is NOT fun, but it IS valuable. I promise.
  5. Start introducing light exercise into your routine. If you can manage it, going for a short walk will keep your legs loose and stop them from stiffening up.

Marathon recovery meal

On the day itself, I find that chocolate milk is the best recovery drink: it’s hydrating, and has a good combo of carbs and protein. I also try to sit in a cold bath for 10 mins. I’m not tough enough for an ice bath, but a cold bath seems to do the trick!

 

I’ve collected these over the years from different sources, and they seem to work for me. However, you may need to vary them slightly to make sure they work for you – and if you’re in a lot of pain, then go see a doctor.

 

And now here are some tangents for this Tuesday post:

 

I learned this week that if you annoy the universe, it will come to get you. Karma, man, it exists. Something happened at the end of last week, and then when SB and I went to Lisbon for the weekend, we lost our luggage.

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In case you didn’t know, Lisbon is gorgeous, but our city break was punctuated with a desperate trip to H&M followed by the Chemist (because losing your luggage and sprinting to make tight plane connections is sweaty work it turns out).

 

Here is our best 'lost suitcase' look.

Here we are spotting the latest trends in ‘I lost my suitcase and I all have are the clothes on my back’.

 

SB got his bag earlier than I did, and went for a run. I didn’t go for a run, but I did get to a rooftop bar, plus we both ate lots of great seafood, so everyone’s a winner. My bag arrived just in time for me to pick it up on the way back to the airport on Sunday.

 

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And on Facebook I was nominated to share 10 books that have stayed with me over the years, so I thought I’d share here too:

 

1) 1984, George Orwell
2) The Baby Sitters Club, Ann M Martin – saw me from ages 7-12!!
3) The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini
4) Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell
5) A Doll’s House, Ibsen
6) Ariel, Sylvia Plath
7) Jamie’s Ministry of Food, Jamie Oliver – this book has literally kept us alive
8) Jude the Obscure, Thomas Hardy
9) Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks
10) Empire Falls, Richard Russo

 

Ellie B

Super foods galore

Living in Australia has many advantages – glorious weather, beautiful beaches and an amazing outdoor lifestyle. So I shouldn’t really complain. But I will; everything is a rip off here. In comparison to home anyway! I know we earn more here but we are still being ripped off! So when I found www.iherb.com. I was delighted. They have every lotion, potion, vitamin and pill you can possibly think of. Whatever protein powder, natural detergent, supplement you want they stock it and at a great price. I got a large parcel in the post yesterday so thought you might like to see what I order and what I rate.

Here is my sunny kitchen counter with 90% of the goods.

iherb

 On the left and far right are Method products – I love this brand. You can read more about them on their website but basically they are all natural cleaning products for you and your home. This time I bought

All Purpose Cleaner in both Grapefruit and Clementine

iherb2

Laundry Detergent Refill

Smarty Tabs – dishwasher tablets

Spearmint Bathroom Cleaner

Basil Dishwash Liquid

A little goes a long way, they smell lovely and look cute on your countertop! But more importantly they are so gentle on your skin. I have psoriasis so tend to flare up to many products but never with these. And if I have to use traditional cleaning products at work, I come down with a massive sneezing fit!

Next over is Plantfusion protein powder – a vegan plant-based complete protein.protein

I bought a large tub of vanilla as I know this flavour is nice. I haven’t had the chocolate raspberry before so I only got a small tub. It’s good! I am trying to take protein shakes after a harder run so having a nice protein powder helps. The nutritional data is there on the left if you like that kind of thing. According to my husband it’s good!

Next over is beta-alanine powder. Both my husband and I use this before long training sessions. There is a whole lot of science behind it but the Cliffs notes version is that it delays muscle fatigue and increases recovery time. If I don’t take it for a while and then I do, I always feel great in those runs. Just a little less tired towards the end – everything helps!

I ordered 2 superfruit/supergreens supplements to give them a try – I’m a sucker for anything that will give me an edge! I have only started taking the Barleans Greens Superfruit 9.52oz (72dpi)Superfruit Greens one this week – you mix with water for a cordial style drink. It tastes nice but will need to report back later to see how it went. The other one is a Madre superfoods supplement. It’s going to be hard to see if they work but hopefully I will feel amazing soon. :) 

Madre also stock the cococardio – it was on special so I tried it. It’s a cocoa type drink for 30 calories…. It contains a range of antioxidant rich ingredients including cocoa, freeze-dried beetroot powder and hibiscus. You mix the powder with water to create a rich chocolate drink. Chocolate drink + 30 calories + antioxidants = win.

I bought some Alter Eco chocolate as well – I don’t do (much) dairy. almond

I got the dark almond flavour and it’s lovely – not as sweet and sugary as a Twix. But that’s not a bad thing! They have loads of other flavours I will try next time. It’s not cheap at $3.50 for a bar but is a nice treat.

 

Oh wait – I bought two supplements. This is probably one of my worst habits – buying supplements and being too lazy to use them! I see them there on my kitchen counter and think ‘oh, I couldn’t be bothered”…I’m a dope. Anyway, to add to my ever-expanding repertoire I got Spirulina and Glucosamine.

spirulina Spirulina needs no introduction! Apparently it’s just magic in a bottle! Great for energy and immune system. Coming into my next marathon training program I want to make sure I am doing everything to stay healthy and energised! The reviews on this one are amazing so bring on the vitality!

 

 

Glucomasine is used by the body to support healthy joint structures. gluco I am taking it every day to support my joints whilst in training. It’s meant to be great for knee pain and things like that. It’s funny, in the reviews loads of people give it to their dogs! Not sure if that is a good or bad thing! I also take magnesium for my muscles.

So, there you have it. What I spend my hard-earned money on – magic potions and cleaning products! The glamorous life I lead!

Gilly P