From what happens to your muscles to a detailed three-week marathon recovery plan, here’s what you need to know after running a marathon. Why not stay on the move with cross-training? We may earn commission if you buy from a link. After that, begin an active recovery program. Don't Stop. After 48 hours, barring no injuries, you can take a warm bath or use the hot tub. One training option is to follow your taper plan in reverse to rebuild your mileage (this is known as reverse tapering). You liked this article Completing a half marathon pretty much guarantees that you have inflicted some damage to your body. Your body needs some time off of intense training before starting up with any further race build-ups. Activity actually helps you recover faster than inactivity because it promotes circulation. Now’s the time to gradually build it back up by doing the last two weeks of your marathon training schedule in reverse. You're a marathoner. Here's how to recover in the hours, days and weeks following a marathon. When reintroducing running again, you don’t have to take baby steps, but respect the high impact and high intensity nature of running to avoid unnecessary aches and pains. If you’re injured don’t try to rush the return to running because you’re frustrated. Whether it was your first or seventh race, there are steps you can take to reduce muscle soreness, rebuild your body’s fuel supply, and get back to … Make sure you maintain your body with, for example, regular foam rolling and post-run stretching to help prevent any niggles from creeping in when you begin to pick up running once again. Women average a mile every 10 … My recovery tips after a half marathon. Finding the Right Amount of Recovery … But the reality is that there is no exact formula to follow for recovery after a marathon, so the best guide is really tuning in and listening to your body. The runs should be roughly: 30-45 minutes long 60 minutes maximum Up to 2 minutes a mile slower than marathon pace Post-marathon recovery . Which Is Better for Recovery: Hot or Cold Therapy? The average mile time for men is between 9 and 11 minutes. It just means taking a break from high-intensity training like speedwork or other races for about two to three weeks. Immediately After the Race Take the Space Blanket. Why don’t we take time off post race? Don’t start a diet or calorie-cutting regime this week – your body needs to heal and reload so fuel it with good proteins, healthy fats and complex carbohydrates to complete a balanced plate. You're feeling exhausted, exhilarated and triumphant. The soreness results from microscopic muscle tissue damage, and the severity of it depends upon the fitness level of the individual and the intensity of the effort relative to the training effort. The longer the race, the longer the recovery. off. But before you crack open the champagne or collapse on the couch, you need to jump on that recovery plan. If you liked this post, don’t forget to share so that others can find it, too. The deep sleep stage restores your body and supports your immune system. In other words, a runner shouldn’t run a step for 55 days after running a hard Comrades marathon. November 2, 2015 July 22, 2018 Marc Pelerin 3 Comments on Marathon Recovery Time. “Light” exercise means exercising at a low-intensity level, i.e., no more than 60 to 65 percent of your max heart rate for a relatively short duration, less than 60 minutes. For example, your first weekday runs would be in the 3 to 6 mile range, the first “long” weekend run would be around 6 miles, the following weekend is around 8 to 10 miles, and then a 10- to 14-mile run the weekend after that. So there’s no reason to become a couch potato! First things first: close your eyes and let yourself drift off to dreamland – for as long and as often as you need to during the first weeks after a marathon. For some, recovery would mean doing nothing and simply relaxing on the couch while some others would probably get back to their runs even before their bodies have fully recovered. Cross the finish line, get your medal, take a picture, and keep walking. Tom adds: The marathon is such a significant challenge for the body that it takes time to recover usual muscle function. How to Recover After a Marathon Just Keep Walking. The recovery period is a good time to decide what you want to do next. There’s a number of reasons why we don’t really devise plans to fit the later request and the reasoning is mainly because of the first issue- the need for recovery. Sleep in, eat, and enjoy your accomplishment. Postmarathon recovery is something many runners pay little attention to. Nick will answer selected questions in a Q&A blog post in October. When your RHR returns to its normal pre-marathon resting heart rate, you are ready to begin running again. Well, that depends on how you ran and how you feel. After three or four days, go for a 20 to 30 minutes recovery run to help you get back into the swing of things as soon as possible. Minimal soreness is a good sign, but give it a few days to kick in. For more information, visit For some, the thought of running again is dreadful, and they’ll enjoy taking a few weeks (or even months!) Recovery after the marathon should begin almost the minute you exit the finish chute. A 50k may only take a couple weeks, but a 100-miler can take 4-6 weeks. Start to build gradually back to running – but make it an easy week. A post-marathon recovery plan can help your body bounce back quickly after a big race. After an ultra take off the number of days until you feel good, then take off 2-3 more! Jul 23, 2018 - You just ran a marathon! Delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) typically follows most marathon efforts. 10 Ways to Recover After the Boston Marathon, After Injury, Laura Thweatt Is Ready for Chicago. Now that you’ve done all the hard work in training for your marathon and you’ve run the race, your attention now needs to turn to recovering. These are signs of fatigue, so take it easy until your exercise heart rate and breathing rate also return to their normal ranges. If this was a goal race, a first half marathon, a huge PR or a really difficult course, ideally you need to give your legs at least a week to recover. This sophisticated wearable tracks daily strain, recovery, resting heart rate, and other important metrics to help you stay injury-free in the future. These goggles cling on to the orbital bones of most faces so you don’t end up with those raccoon-like bags under your eyes. Marathon Recovery - What you need to be doing the first day, week, and month post marathon Pro tip: Plan out your marathon recovery before the actual day of the race. The science of exercise. Long runs aren’t necessarily the best way to ease back into training at this point, but if you’re anxious to do a long training session, try cross-training, for example cycling. As a general guideline, I suggest taking three to seven days completely off after a marathon. Before jumping back into training or racing, you should make sure that you recover properly. Therefore, it is essential that all marathon runners have a 2-3 week marathon recovery protocol that focuses on rest and rejuvenation of these physiological systems. After that, begin an active recovery program. Fill the tub with water and hop in. The runs should be roughly: If you don’t feel like getting back to running yet, give yourself time – don’t force it! Sara Hall: Second-Fastest American of All Time, Man Runs Across Country After Losing His Job, Sarmistha Sen Went for a Run. Follow these tips on how to recover from a race to keep some of the post-race soreness at bay. Please note that the information provided in the Polar Blog articles cannot replace individual advice from health professionals. Thanks! If you continue a diet with bad fats and high simple sugars for days and weeks, it’ll be hard to control your blood sugar levels, sleep and mood. Smart recovery is essential after a marathon or any big race. Day 2: Rest or 20 minute run or walk. I also like to recommend monitoring your resting heart rate (RHR) for an objective assessment of your recovery process. It’s important to recover after a half marathon. Originally published September 17, 2020 9:00 am, updated December 16, 2020. Then ease down into a conversational pace for the remainder of the time, followed by 15-20 minutes of stretching. As you return to running, be aware of your breathing and heart rate while running. Ahh, recovery. Most marathon runners finish a mile every 10 minutes. Runner's World participates in various affiliate marketing programs, which means we may get paid commissions on editorially chosen products purchased through our links to retailer sites. So what are the best ways to fast track your marathon recovery time? Running Power is a useful metric for running performance, but recovery, too. You’ve done it. If your heart rate spikes up, or your breathing sounds like a locomotive, you know you are still recovering from the marathon. Four to five days later, you can return to light exercise and cross-training. If running is the only sport you enjoy, putting on off-road shoes and heading for the trails is a good way to spice up your usual routine. As a general guideline, I suggest taking three to seven days completely off after a marathon.