Skip to main content
  1. Life
  2. Health & Fitness
  3. Fitness & Exercise

Marathon recovery do's and don'ts

See also

If you're one of the thousands of American runners who will cross a marathon finish line this year, you know that your accomplishment can come with its share of aches and pains while your body recovers from 26.2 miles on the street.

To help you recover properly from your run, Jamie Walker, a personal trainer and yoga instructor who has run 15 marathons and over than 10 ultramarathons, shares her recovery do's and don'ts for the week after a marathon. She is the founder of Fit Approach and SweatGuru and recently ran the 2014 LA Marathon.

Read on for Walker's recovery do's and don'ts for the week after your marathon!

Do: Refuel and rehydrate
Do: Refuel and rehydrate Rick Kern/Getty Images for Target

Do: Refuel and rehydrate

Eating and drinking are some of the most important things to do after a marathon. Try to eat healthy carbs and proteins to build back up the glycogen in your muscles.

Remember to drink plenty of water to restore fluid in your body.

Do: Stretch
Do: Stretch Rick Kern/Getty Images for Samsung

Do: Stretch

More than likely, you'll be sore and stiff the days and week after a marathon. You just ran 26.2 miles!

Take some time to stretch or do yoga to flush out some of the lactic acid build-up. Your body will thank you for it!

Do: Move around
Do: Move around Rick Kern/Getty Images for Samsung

Do: Move around

While you don't want to overdo it with exercise, movement is key to reducing pain and stiffness.

Whether you do yoga, cross training, or activities like swimming, cycling, or brisk walking, your recovery time will be so much faster when you incorporate some movement into your day.

Do: Take an ice bath
Do: Take an ice bath Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Do: Take an ice bath

If you’re experiencing significant soreness or discomfort, consider taking an ice bath.

It isn't easy, but it can help relieve pain and soreness in a big way.

Don't: Obsess over your race
Don't: Obsess over your race Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Don't: Obsess over your race

Celebrate your accomplishment, but don’t obsess over it. It won’t do you or anyone around you any good.

(It will likely drive your friends and family crazy!)

Don't: Overtrain
Don't: Overtrain Donald Miralle/Getty Images for NASCAR

Don't: Overtrain

Resist the urge to start training again too fast. Not recovering properly can lead to injury.

Take time to let your body rest and recover so you'll be ready for your next event. 

Don't: Deprive your body of fuel
Don't: Deprive your body of fuel Mike McGinnis/Getty Images for HumanaVitality

Don't: Deprive your body of fuel

If you feel hungry or thirsty the week after your marathon, you probably are!

Listen to your body and don't be afraid to eat or drink up! As always, just try to avoid binging on junk food.

Advertisement

Life

  • Randy Travis
    Randy Travis returns with 'Influence Vol. 2: The Man I Am' in August
    Today's Buzz
  • Alternative medicine
    Alternative medicine: Remedies to make the bugs in your body go away for good
    Camera
    7 Photos
  • Beach body
    Fitness: Earn your beach body badge with bootcamp classes
    Camera
    10 Photos
  • Back to school
    These 10 items are sure winners on your back-to-school shopping trip
    Camera
    12 Photos
  • Izabel Goulart
    Izabel Goulart walks the runway with Studio F at Colombia Moda
    Camera
    19 Photos
  • Ombre' technique
    Go for the gusto: What ombre' technique are you?
    Camera
    5 Photos