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Posted By Sport&Health on Sep 17, 2019 8:40:17 AM

Work hard, play hard is the cry from athletes around the world that participate in extreme sports challenges like a Spartan Race, triathlon, a marathon or Tough Mudder. There is power in recovery after a big event but what does that mean?

 

What is Recovery?

Recovery is a time of healing as your body re-hydrates, removes lactic acid and other waste products, reduces inflammation and does damage control. Without proper recovery, you risk injury to joints and muscles when you start working out again. 

When Does Recovery Start? 

Recovery begins as soon as you cross the finish line or hit the buzzer. You’ve completed the big event but you need to keep walking otherwise your muscles will cramp up as the lactic acid builds. 

Don’t let that stop you from grabbing fluids, preferably something with electrolytes, and some carbohydrate and protein snacks. You’ll want something to eat within 30 to 60 minutes after completing the course to keep your blood sugar from dropping. Aim for 200 to 300 calories that digest easily. 

You can eat, drink and walk at the same time. Also, find a way to cover up. Some events offer mylar blankets at the finish line or have a friend on hand with a towel, jacket or light blanket to give you. Your body will start to cool off immediately and without some cover, your temperature will drop. 

Do Some Stretching

Keep the stretches slow and cover every joint in your body. Stretching helps lubricate joints and restore range of motion. 

Take a Shower

Step under the water and alternate the temperature from as hot as you can stand it to nice and cold. Change every 60 seconds or so and make sure to hit your back and legs. 

The alternating hot and cold improves circulation to these areas. Better circulation means more oxygen-rich blood and nutrients to the soft tissue and muscle 

Get a Real Meal

Eat heartily after the event. Nothing is really out of bounds but try for a practical mix of carbs and protein. Pizza, for example, is the choice of champians — specifically Javier Gomez Noya World Ironman Champ


In the next few days, give yourself a chance to rest before starting to train for the next one.  For more information on fitness recovery, contact one of our many Sport & Health fitness professionals.

 

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