How do you recover from a long run?

Good morning!!  I hope your off to a beautiful start.

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Over the weekend while catching up on Runners World and came across a really cool article called “A Good Cure? The lowdown on recovery remedies” in the January 2013 magazine.  I wanted to share a few things I found pretty interesting.

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“The Cure > Compression

The Verdict > Try it

While they’re not noticeably effective if worn immediately after exercise, one study in the Journal of Sports Sciences shows that compression socks can reduce delayed onset muscle soreness if worn during a run.  “They’re especially effective for hill runs because the extra tightness reduces muscle load, decreasing post workout soreness,” say’s Sims.”

Y’all know I’m a huge fan of compression socks & sleeves.  I really do think they help me bounce back faster after a run.  After reading this, I’m going to wear them on regular training runs.  They sure don’t hurt so I shall continue to rock ‘em!

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“The Cure > NSAIDS

The Verdict > Skip it

Following a tough run that makes walking down stairs uncomfortable, you may take nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as ibuprofen, because they relieve painful inflammation quickly.  But this actually impairs muscle growth, says Sims.  Plus, NSAIDs can make you ignore cues that your body is fatigued.  And if you push through soreness, you could further delay your recovery.”

I found this one really interesting.  Who knew ibuprofen impairs muscle growth?  I’m curious about how much it impairs growth.  I guess every little bit counts though. 

I’m guilty of popping a few after a long run, especially a half marathon.  See, yet another reason to have a coffee instead.  <-that has nothing to do with anything at all, but let’s just go with it mmmkay.

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“The Cure > Ice Bath

The Verdict > Try it-maybe

Research on whether sitting in a chilly tub reduces post run achiness is mixed-some studies report it helps; others say it makes no difference.  Jason Karp, Ph.D., author of Running A marathon for Dummies, says there is some evidence that cold water can lessen exercise related muscle damage and inflammation, so it could benefit you after a particularly intense or long run (like a marathon) where your muscles have experienced the most damage.  But if you’re not up for the teeth-chattering treatment, don’t feel compelled.  However, “spot icing” to reduce pain and inflammation in an acute injury, like a twisted ankle, is smart.”

Since I like my baths hot and bubbly, I’m not brave enough to try an ice bath after a long run, but some runners swear by it.  Maybe I’ll work up the courage this summer?  I totally agree with “spot icing” if a muscle is particularly sore or achy, icing definitely helps.

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Last call for 40% off Pro Compression socks.  Promo code SCB ends 2/28.

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P.S I hear the March sock of the month email is coming out a little early, but ya didn’t hear that from me.  😉

Spill your recovery secrets!  Anything you swear by?

Do you use compression socks or sleeves?  How do they help your recovery?

Do you take NSAIDs after a long run?

Have you ever taken an ice bath?  How does it help you?

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0 Comments on “How do you recover from a long run?

  1. We used to do ice baths in college for soccer – especially during pre-season when we had two and three-a-days. I think that they definitely helped! Some of the girls on my team would just barely stick their calves in, but I was always one of the ones who went all in down to my neck and I definitely complained of being sore a lot less than they did…but I suppose that could be due to a lot of other factors, too. Either way, I’m convinced.

    I don’t like compression socks/sleeves as much when I am actually running. I have really big calves and even correctly sized sleeves sometimes just feel too constricting the further I get into a run (maybe my calves swell?), but I LOVEEEE to wear them after a long/hard run and while I sleep. I have definitely noticed a difference in calf tightness/soreness since I have been using them!

    • Wow you are so brave!! I really need to give the ice bath a try after a long run.
      What a rock star for 2 and 3 a days. Wow, that’s intense.
      Are you training for a marathon?
      Have a great day!

  2. I’m an ice bath believer for long runs! I put on a hoodie and get in waist deep, still clothed w/compression socks, and drink hot chocolate! My husband and I have even taken one together after runs together…lol. TMI?? (It wasn’t romantic, promise.)

  3. I’ve used ibuprofen, but usually more for joint pain from something other than running. If you like hot baths, you could consider epsom salts rather than bubbles; I couldn’t get into an ice bath either.

  4. Love my compression! I have them on right now just for a lazy day around the house! Never tried an ice bath. I think I’m too much of a wimp for that self inflicted torture.

    I saw the March SOM on FB! I need them!

  5. I thought that article was interesting too! I usually go with compression right after, and really make a point to move around later in the day or the next day. I’ve tried the ice bath thing and it’s just not worth it for me. I think it is totally badass, though!

  6. OBSESSED with my compression calf sleeves. Feels like I live in them! I’m with you though, can’t make myself get into a tub filled with ice cubes, but I always ice my shins and knees and anything else that feels abnormally achy after my long runs.

    Thanks so much for that discount code, I’m going to order myself a couple more pairs of sleeves right now!

  7. I love my compression socks! I do think they help cut down on DOMS. I’ve been on and off with the ice baths. Did them quite a bit during summer marathon training, especially since it was so HOT all the time. Haven’t done them in ages, though, and not missing them much!

  8. I think I saw this same article. I’ve never used compression socks but that’s mostly because I don’t like high socks. I’ve done an ice bath or two but can’t recall a huge difference in recovery. And I try not to take pain killers after a run because I once heard its not good for your body, but I can’t remember why! I did take some last weekend because I was in pain but not like a normal running pain, I tweaked something in my hip/side of butt the day before. Which of course caused me to worry all day! Lol

  9. new reader here so first off i have to say power to the cupcake lovers! umm, #runhardeatharder 😉 i used to take ice baths when i was training hard and i’m a big believer that they help, they just REALLY stink. i also rely on icing sore spots, and i’m really good at busting out the frozen corn bags at will. 🙂

  10. I do wear compression sleeves with running…. and they helped. a little bit, but I still get crazy achy calves : so I practically live in the socks and sleeves and on my roller.

    Foam rolling and the stick should be added to recovery aid.

    Going to use the stick and put on my recovery socks now. Oh, and I ordered more with your code 🙂 Thanks a bunch!!

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