My favorite recovery practices are:
- Epsom baths: At least 2 times a week, I am taking an epsom bath for 20-30 minutes. Sometimes this is after a run, sometimes it's a true rest day, or other times it's when work has been crazy and I need just some quiet moments to chill. I'm obsessed with the Dr Teals Lavender Epsom Salt . Lately I've been adding the Dr. Teal's Lavender Bubble Bath which takes it to an awesome level. I do need to drink a ton of water after doing it, as epsom bath's can be dehydrating.
- Hydration: Speaking of drinking all of the water, I've really been upping my water intake this summer. When it's hot out, I sweat like crazy, so I know I need to drink a ton of water to replace everything I've lost. It's been helping to flush out some of the soreness in my legs.
- Compression socks: I've been a firm believer in compression socks for years, so I've been wearing them a lot in the evenings and after runs. I've even contemplated wearing them to work with knee-length dresses, but I think I might get weird looks. Kyle just loves when we go out to lunch and I refuse to take them off.
- Massages: I started doing monthly massages this past spring, and I think it's really helping! I look forward to massage day so much! I would really like to do 2 massages a month but that's just not in the cards money wise. It's moments like this that I wish I was a sponsored runner. :P
In addition to recovery work, I've been focusing on injury prevention as well!
Injury prevention practices:
- Glute activation drills: I'm doing these before EVERY run. Whether it's a see-saw lift, or clam shells, or a standing banded leg lift, I'm doing *something* to get my booty woke up and ready to run. And it's truly making all the difference. Sometimes when my legs feel super heavy on a run, I will stop and do some quick leg lifts to invite the booty to the party. I got a pair of resistance bands for Christmas that were just okay, but I recently ordered this set, which is what we use at POWER and they're amazing.
- Sanford POWER: This is one of the #1 things that has kept me injury free, and I know I've bragged about it a million times, but I'm going to keep doing it. I LOVE POWER. It's functional strength-training specifically for runners. My runs after POWER are always rockin' because my form is so spot on after a 60 minute session.
- Foam rolling/stick: This is probably my least favorite practice. I know I need it, but I don't love it. And my runs the day after doing it usually feel junky, but I still do it.
- Core work: Somewhere during the time of doing all the yoga during teacher training, I stopped doing core work. I thought I was getting plenty during yoga, right? Wrong. But now I'm getting back to it. I know that my posture is the first thing to go when I'm tired on a long long run or a race, so I'm hoping that more core work will lead to better form when races and runs get really tough and tiring. Not quite Operation: Alba Abs of days past, but I also wouldn't mind being able to shed the shirt on some really toasty runs without fear of being judged.
**I've included a couple of affiliate links to Amazon for specific products that I have been buying, using, and loving. If you purchase from the links, I get a few pennies back!