Are you planning for a long run or marathon but don’t want to exhaust yourself? The present Spring months mark the official “marathon season” and if you plan on running one, you shouldn't only look for ways to prepare for it but to recover yourself after that. If you have been inactive for a while, running a marathon can be tiring and push your limits to the edge (especially if you are going to run miles with other people), but the good news is that you can actually do some things to recover yourself and replenish your energy so you are ready for your next daily task.
Experts suggest the following formula, when it comes to recovering yourself fast after a long run or marathon which is known as “the 4 Rs” and more specifically:
Resting. After a long run, your muscles and bones will most probably feel a bit strained. A little pain and discomfort are perfectly normal as almost all your body’s muscles are involved in running for long periods of time. Resting and a good night’s sleep for a few days after is essential for accelerating the recovery of mildly tired and muscles and you ideally want to sleep for 8 hours. If you have trouble sleeping, you can try sipping a cup of tea with calming herbal ingredients--some herbs e.g chamomile, lotus leaf will also help relax the muscles as well so you get both benefits at once.
Rehydrating. As you lose an important amount of liquids after a long run, you will have to replenish them soon after and for the rest of the days. You should aim to drink some low calorie and beneficial water or homemade ice tea drinks at least 7 times during the day (one cup or glass each time). It would also be wise to avoid drinking more than 2 glasses at once as you will bloat yourself. Remember, you want to keep your levels of hydration staple and so drinking at different times throughout the day will help achieve that. Make sure you also avoid any carbonated or sugary drinks as they will rise your energy levels fast and then drop abnormally, making you feel more thirsty and slack than before.
Repairing. If you wish to repair muscle tissue lost during the marathon fast, you should aim to consume 15-20 grams of pure protein to nourish and repair your muscles. Some good and fast options to cover the 20 gram of protein mark are, 2 slices of wholewheat bread with cottage cheese and salmon slices on top, 1 small bowl of greek yogurt topped with some nuts, 1 protein bar, and banana smoothie with one scoop of protein powder and 1 tbsp of chia seeds on top.
Refueling. While proteins are important for helping rebuild lost muscle tissue after a long run or a high-intensity exercise, healthy carbs will actually fuel your tissues with energy so they can carry out important tasks. To help restore any lost energy, you should aim to consume at least 1 gram of carbs /kg of your body weight e.g if you weigh 60 kg, that would be 60 grams daily. Some good and healthy carb sources are: roasted sweet potatoes, carrots, brown rice, seeds, quinoa, and whole grains.