Massage can be a very effective way to aid the recovery of the body after a run, helping to keep muscles tendons and ligaments strong, supple and healthy.
As someone who enjoys to run I can definitely get on board with this. One of the first things I did after my first (and only) marathon was to go for a massage. It was not only really relaxing but also definitely helped me on the road to a speed recovery.
“Studies published in the Journal of Athletic Training and the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that massage after exercise reduced the intensity of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS)”
Research even suggests that massage can improve immune function and reduces inflammation, increases lymphocytes (white blood cells that play a key role in fighting infection) and decreases levels of cortisol (the “stress hormone” linked inflammation).
So why should you use massage as a training tool to help you run?
It can help you to boost recovery!
Tight muscles can throw off your running gait creating an imbalance in the body which over time may cause problems.
When the body feels free of tension you’re more likely to notice small imbalances before they become a problem.
When your muscles are strong, supple and elastic they stabilise motion, produce more power and reduce impact stress.
Even if running is a relatively new activity for you, massage can still be of benefit because it alleviates tight muscles and can help relax those sore muscles that you get from starting a new workout regime.
Should you go for a massage before or after a run?
Answer: Either or both
Massage can be helpful to runners who are preparing for a big run since they help to loosen muscles. Just make sure the treatment includes a nice amount of stretching and more vigorous types of massage techniques to increase blood flow if it is on run day.
After a race or tough workout, you might get a treatment to help with recovery. Speak with your massage therapist about the kind of treatment you are looking for. The therapist can then work with you to determine the type of treatment to aid in your specific recovery.
Some other things that I find very helpful pre or post run include:
2.A hot bath with epsom salts
4.Drinking plenty of water
If you have any questions or if you would like to share some of your recovery tips I would love to hear from you.