If you recall, my recovery sucked for MCM. I did everything wrong, wrong, wrong. I waited 7 – 8 hours to get a REAL meal in, endured a not so great massage, didn’t stretch, didn’t take an Epsom salt bath, didn’t foam roll, and didn’t continue to hydrate. Remember when I said “lessons learned,” well I heeded my words and paid special attention to make sure I recovered correctly after Philly. This is what I did different:
- Ate a banana and drank orange juice within the first 10 minutes of my finish to help with re-hydration and replace to glycogen.
- Stretched within the first 20 minutes of my finish. Probably could’ve done more than I did, but it was better than MCM.
- Ate a REAL meal with real protein within the first hour of finishing. I had flank steak, half a hamburger, fingerling potatoes, and a Bloody Mary. For me, my body feels so much better after I eat a meat protein….and a Bloody Mary (ha!). I know there are a lot of vegans and vegetarians, so if you don’t eat meat, I suggest eating a lot of real plant protein. I hear that shakes absorb faster, but in my opinion there’s nothing better for you than real food.
- Soaked in a hot Epsom salt bath within 5 hours of my finish. Ideally, I would’ve wanted to do this sooner, but it just didn’t happen with logistics. Nevertheless, it helped.
- After the hot Epsom salt bath, I foam rolled from the waist down. It hurt like hell, but it did help move the lactic acid out of my muscles.
- And throughout the day, continued to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!
- Oh, and sleep…lots and lots of sleep
When I woke up after MCM, I could barely move. However, when I woke up after Philly, I was completely fine!!! I did have some Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS), but I wasn’t crippled. As I told one of my friends, if zombies were chasing me, I would live…but if they were chasing me after MCM, I would’ve had to just serve myself to them on a platter. I was so surprised at how good I felt. There was no duck walk, no grimacing while trying to sit or stand, and no looking at stairs as if they were the devil’s creation.
In my research, I found some great links to pages with good information on how to recover from a marathon.
- 3 Phases of Post-Marathon Recovery
- The Importance of Recovery After A Marathon (this link includes a post-marathon workout schedule)
- Marathon Recovery Tips
Now, you have to remember my recovery method is MY recovery method. Everyone reacts differently to different things. Having the opportunity to run two marathons close together really allowed me to fix what was broke the first time. This may work for you, but then again, it may not. But through trial and error, you’ll figure it out!