Have a Recovery Sports Massage. After finishing a marathon your muscles can often feel achy and tired this is because they are inflamed due to the repetitive stress and load of running long distance. This causes the muscle fibres to produce waste such as lactic acid that can remain in the compartments of your legs and prolong the feeling of soreness.
A Sports Massage and can help flush through muscle waste products and improve the speed of your recovery, so that you don’t have sore, tight and achy muscles for longer than you should have.
Keep Mobile. In the days and weeks after a marathon its very easy to sit for long periods and to avoid your daily activities. However it is important to stay mobile and take short walks as you will be more likely to stiffen up in your leg muscles if you sit around.
Stretch in the Daytime. It is also important to do long hold (30-40 seconds) static stretching to your legs and hip muscles, particularly your calfs, quadriceps and hip flexors as these will probably be the most effected areas. Remember not to hold the stretch too tight and ensure that your breathe and relax while holding a stretch for the best results.
Elevation & ICE in the evening. At the end of a day it can be beneficial to use cold therapy to help speed up your recovery, by reducing the inflammation in your legs. A practical way of doing this is to wrap a bag of peas in a tea towel and place it on your legs for 10minutes every hour for three applications in the evening before going to bed.
It is a bonus if you can also have your feet up on some pillows so your legs are up higher than your heart. The elevation may have the added benefit of sending fluid back towards your hips where your lymphatic system can help speed up your recovery.
Sleep, Eat & Drink Well. A good 8-10hour sleep in the nights after a marathon will help your body recover and promote healing as well as to rebalance your hormones. Try to minimise eating junk foods and drinking alcohol instead add in some more water or herbal teas as well as one or two more pieces of fruit and vegetables to your daily meals as this will increase the level of anti-oxidants in your blood which will help speed up your recovery by reducing inflammation in your muscles.