The ice bath…it’s one of the most dreaded and most loved long run recovery tools. I will admit to having tried it a few times, but that was back when I lived in Kansas City and it was like 32 degrees outside to start with…so yes I really, really hated it.
At that point, I turned to Epsom salt baths after my long runs and for the most part I haven’t looked back (except after that 19 miler in 100 degree temps here). It’s very likely that I will embark on more ice baths next year when the temps rise with my distance, but for now I am going to stick to the Epsom salt.
Causes muscles to tighten and drains the blood, once you step out blood starts flowing and in theory this flushes lactic acid and speeds recovery.
Reduces swelling and tissue break down
No major studies can agree on whether or not this works…but if you think it works well with running that’s generally all that matters.
EPSOM SALT BATH
Body more easily absorbs magnesium through the skin than in a pill this results in a number of benefits.
Eliminates toxins which helps to easy muscle pain
Improved nerve functions by regulating electrolytes
Helps your adrenaline glands ensure they have enough magnesium, which they likely do not after a run because it causes so much stress on the body.
YOGA AFTER LONG RUNS
Post long run recently I have not had time to hit the bath because I’ve been taking a quick shower and running off to yoga. I have to admit that yoga is making a huge difference in how my legs feel on Sunday and allows me to get in an easy run…BUT sometimes during yoga if I’m sweating it’s tough and I know that bath would have helped A LOT.
Last week there was no shade and no wind at yoga…so while I was trying my hardest to keep up with my hydration I just couldn’t drink enough not to be sick to my stomach. The result…I had to wear compression shocks too and from yoga to help with cramping!
What’s your post long run plan to get your legs feeling great…or at least passable for the rest of the day?? Have you tried both the ice bath and epsom salt bath?
I am grateful for outdoor yoga
I am grateful for shade
I am grateful for air conditioning
I am grateful for kitty toys
I am grateful for friendly dogs that don’t jump