Essential Marathon Recovery Tips for Runners

Running a marathon is an awe-inspiring and challenging physical feat. However, it takes its toll on your body, both mentally and physically making it tough to go up and down stairs. To be successful in recovering from running a marathon, you will need to combine effective all-round post race recovery with fitness and strength training. Recovery should commence as soon as possible after the race, with a focus on helping you walk the next day. This will not only enable you to recuperate but also make you fitter and stronger. Read on as we discuss some essential Marathon recovery tips.

Did you know that you actually get fitter when you recover properly?

According to a study published in the journal Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism, marathon runners who took a break from running and then resumed training recovered more muscle mass and strength than those who continued with their regular routine. The researchers say that muscles are better able to adapt when they’re given time to rest and rebuild after intense activity.

Physically, your fitness correlates to the length of your rest. Your body needs time to rest and recover after training and to adapt to the training you’ve undergone, and it s during these periods that you get fitter and stronger. Training causes micro- damages to your muscles and other muscle groups, causing the body to begin breaking down.

Recovery can seem like a powerful buzzword, and the marketplace is all inundated with products claiming to improve recovery, so read here to learn what does and does not work in terms of recovering well from marathons.


First up in our list of marathon recovery tips is the importance of fluid intake. Many runners do not drink enough fluids before and after a marathon, which can lead to dehydration and other health problems. Even if you don’t feel thirsty, you need to drink plenty of fluids before and after a race. Drink at least two cups of water or sports drink before the race, and another two cups during the race. Drink plenty of fluids after the race, too. aim for at least 16 ounces within two hours of finishing. If you’re feeling sick or have a fever, drink even more fluids.

Dehydration can impair your running performance and increase your risk of getting injured. When you’re dehydrated, your body can’t cool itself down as effectively when you sweat, which can lead to heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Dehydration can also cause cramps and muscle fatigue.

“Water makes up two thirds of our body,” said Dr. Tania Dempsey, a sports medicine specialist with Advocate Medical Group in Park Ridge, Ill. “When we are dehydrated, our body isn’t able to cool down as effectively after a run and we can experience muscle cramps, weakness and fatigue.”

Dempsey recommends runners drink plenty of fluids in the hours leading up to their run – including water, sports drinks and broth-based soups – as well as during and after their workout. In fact, she suggests drinking at least 16 ounces of fluid for every pound lost during a run.

After a marathon or long run, it is important to hydrate and replace lost salts. Sweating helps us cool down, but it also causes us to lose electrolytes and sodium. This crusty residue on our skin is not just dirt- it’s the salt that’s been left behind. If we don’t replace these lost salts, we can become dehydrated and our sore muscles can start to cramp. Sports drinks are a great way to hydrate and replace lost electrolytes. They typically contain sodium and other important electrolytes that our bodies need.

Ensuring adequate hydration is also crucial in post-marathon recovery; drinking plenty of fluids in the hours after running can help flush out any toxins that were released during the race.

Replenish your energy stores with plenty of healthy foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat proteins, and healthy fats. These foods will help you rebuild your muscles and get back on your feet. Be sure to avoid processed foods, sugary snacks, and alcohol, which can sabotage your recovery efforts.

Marathon recovery tips: Rest & refuelling

When you cross the finish line of a marathon, your body is depleted of glycogen stores. You need to eat immediately after the race to help with recovery and to help the body repair any microdamage that occurred during the race. Carbohydrates and protein are the ideal foods to refuel your body. Consuming a carbohydrate-rich food within 30 minutes of finishing and then every 2 hours for the next 4 hours will help restore muscle glycogen stores. Protein is also important in helping to rebuild muscle tissue, so aiming for 20-30 grams of protein in the first few hours after running can be beneficial. Some good sources of post-marathon protein include lean meats, eggs, dairy products, soy products, and quinoa. Protein helps rebuild muscle tissue, while carbohydrates help restore energy levels.


Now that you’ve completed your marathon, it’s time for some rest and refueling to aid in your recovery. Sleep is free, and getting a good night’s sleep is crucial for cell growth and repair, as well as releasing human growth hormone (HGH), which helps rebuild damaged tissues, bones, and muscles. aim for eight hours of quality sleep in a dark, quiet room.

Sleep is essential for allowing the body to rebuild tissues that were damaged during the race. Growth hormone (HGH) is also critical for tissue growth and repair, and eating foods high in protein can help to increase HGH levels. Finally, getting enough quality sleep is essential for maintaining optimal health and preventing injuries in the future.

Sleep is free, and cell growth and repair occur most effectively during sleep. Getting adequate sleep will help your body produce more human growth hormone (HGH), which is essential for rebuilding tissue. Eating enough protein will also help rebuild muscle fibers. aim for about 0.5 grams per pound of body weight each day. Carbs are also important for energy, so make sure you include plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains in your diet. Finally, don’t forget to drink plenty of fluids to replace the fluids you lost while running.

Immune system:

Most runners know the importance of rest after a marathon, but new research suggests that taking things easy for more than one day may be key to getting back on your feet. Scientists found that the immune system is compromised for several days after running a marathon, making people more susceptible to colds and viruses. In order to allow the immune system to recover, they advise taking at least three days of rest before returning to your regular routine. A cold or virus can slow down your recovery process.

Marathon recovery tips: Recovery techniques and aids


A post-marathon massage can aid in your recovery by helping to flush out lactic acid from your muscles promote blood flow and prevent stiffness. It can also help to reduce inflammation and promote healing of damaged tissue. Massage can also help to reduce the risk of developing blood clots which can be a serious complication after long-distance running. It is important to choose a qualified sports massage therapist who understands the importance of working slowly and gently on tired muscles. A good massage will leave you feeling invigorated and refreshed rather than sore and bruised. It is important to drink plenty of water after your massage to help your body flush out toxins.

There are many different schools of thought when it comes to post-marathon massage. Some runners believe that it is an essential part of the recovery process while others feel that it does more harm than good. The truth is that there are pros and cons to both sides of the argument.


  • Strengthens muscles, ligaments, tendons, and tissues during recovery.
  • Helps you to sleep better by reducing pain and tension.
  • Helps to relax the mind.
  • Helps to regulate your mood.


  • Can cause skin irritation and allergic reactions.
  • Many health professionals do not recommend it for athletes, because it can cause further inflammation and delay the healing process.
  • Some runners find that post-race massages are very painful especially if the muscles are very sore.
  • Massage can be costly.

Foam Rolling:

Post-marathon foam rolling can help aid in the recovery process. Self-myofascial release with a foam roller or tennis / lacrosse ball can help break up Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). Rolling the muscles and connective tissue that were used during the marathon can help improve blood flow and reduce muscle tension. Foam rollers are a popular alternative to traditional massage for people who are looking for a way to self-massage and relieve muscle soreness. Foam rolling has been shown to be effective in reducing pain and improving range of motion and it is a relatively inexpensive way to get started with self-massage. There are a few different types of foam rollers on the market and they vary in terms of firmness and size. It is important to choose a foam roller that is appropriate for your level of fitness and intensity of your marathon training plan.


  • Foam rollers are an inexpensive and effective way to aid the recovery process.
  • Foam rollers can be used in any gym or at home.
  • It can also help to release knots and trigger points that can cause pain and discomfort.


  • Foam rollers are usually only used after the injury has healed.
  • Foam rollers are more effective when used continuously every day of the recovery process.
  • Can also cause bruising and soreness so it is important to use caution when foam rolling marathon-related injuries.

Percussive therapy:

Percussive therapy is a type of massage that uses short concentrated pulses of pressure to release muscle tightness and knots. It can be used before or after a marathon to help prevent injuries and aid in recovery. Percussive therapy has been shown to increase blood flow and reduce inflammation both of which are important for recovery from strenuous exercise. There are many different types of percussive therapy devices on the market so be sure to do your research to find one that best suits your needs.

Incorrect use of a massage gun can lead to poor recovery after a marathon. When used correctly, percussive therapy can help improve blood flow, reduce muscle soreness and aid muscle re. The massage gun should be targeted at the large muscle groups, not the small muscles around the joints. Improper use can lead to pain and inflammation in these areas.


  • Massage gun provides a deep tissue massage that may help with inflammation.
  • They can help to improve blood circulation, increase the range of motion in your joints, and stimulate the release of endorphins, which can help to reduce pain.
  • Additionally, percussive massage guns are relatively easy to use and can be done in a short amount of time.
  • Massage gun is portable and can be used at home


  • They can be quite loud and may not be suitable for use in public places.
  • They can be quite expensive.
  • Some are not very efficient.
  • The massage gun is very expensive.

There are many products on the market that can aid in your post marathon recovery. I would recommend the following three products:

1. The Theragun G3PRO is a handheld percussive therapy device that can help to reduce muscle soreness and promote circulation. It comes with a variety of attachments for different areas of the body and has a rechargeable battery.

2 The Hypervolt Plus is another handheld percussive therapy device that can help with muscle soreness and stiffness. It also comes with a variety of attachments and has a long-lasting battery.

3 The TheraBand Roller Massager is a foam roller that can be used to massage muscles and promote circulation. It is available in two sizes and has a textured surface for added benefit.

Epsom Salts:

After completing a marathon, many runners swear by Epsom salts to aid in their recovery. Epsom salts are a natural mineral compound of magnesium and sulphate. When dissolved in water, they create a hypertonic solution that can be absorbed through the skin. This increases the levels of magnesium and sulphate in the body, which can help to ease sore joints and muscles.

While there is some anecdotal evidence to support the use of Epsom salts for post-marathon recovery, there is limited scientific research on the topic. Some studies have shown that Epsom salt baths can help to reduce inflammation and pain in people with arthritis, but more research is needed to determine if this is also true for runners.


  • The best part about Epsom salts is that they are so cheap and easy to find.
  • They can help to ease sore joints and muscles


  • They can be expensive.
  • They can be messy. The salts are abrasive and will coat your skin in an icky white residue.
  • There is no scientific evidence to support recovery health claims so benefits can be due to placebo effect.
  • Potential for side effects if too much Epsom salt is taken in at once.

Overall, while more research is needed on the matter, there is some evidence to suggest that post marathon Epsom salt baths can aid in recovery strategy. If you decide to give them a try, make sure to follow the instructions carefully and avoid taking in too much salt at once.

Conpression wear:

Compression clothing (compression tights, compression socks etc), also known as compression wear, is a type of clothing that is designed to compress the body. This compression can be beneficial for people who suffer from varicose veins, as it can help improve circulation. However, there is some conflicting science on whether or not compression clothing actually aids in recovery from activities such as running a marathon. Some experts believe that the compression can help improve blood flow and reduce swelling, while others believe that it can impair performance and cause discomfort.


  • Helps improve blood circulation.
  • Helps to flush out toxins and repair muscle damage.


  • It can be expensive.
  • If not worn correctly, it can impair movement and breathing.

Ultimately, more research is needed to determine the full benefits and drawbacks of using compression wear for post-marathon recovery. Despite the conflicting evidence, many runners swear by compression clothing as a way to aid in recovery.

Ice baths:

When you cross the finish line of a marathon, your body is screaming for relief. You’re hot, sweaty, and exhausted. Soaking in an ice bath may be one of the first things that comes to mind to help speed up your recovery. But is it worth it?

There is a lot of anecdotal evidence that taking an ice bath after a marathon helps with recovery. But does the science back up this claim?

There’s no doubt that cold water exposure can help minimise fatigue after a hard effort. A study published in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise found that runners who took an ice bath for 10 minutes after a marathon experienced less muscle soreness and inflammation than those who didn’t take an ice bath.

Most runners find that taking an ice bath after a marathon helps with pain and inflammation. It can also help reduce muscle soreness in the days following the race. But whether or not you take an ice bath is ultimately up to you. If you think it will help you recover faster, then go for it! Just make sure to drink plenty of fluids before and after your bath to avoid any potential health risks.


  • Studies have shown that it can minimise fatigue and muscle soreness.
  • Cold water exposure has been shown to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, it can help to promote relaxation and reduce stress levels.


  • Freezing water can actually cause more damage to your muscles.
  • If you stay in the ice bath for too long, you could end up hypothermic.

Most runners find that taking an ice bath after a marathon helps with pain and inflammation.But whether or not you take an ice bath is ultimately up to you. If you think it will help you recover faster, then go for it! Just make sure to drink plenty of fluids before and after your bath to avoid any potential health risks.


Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is a spice that has been used in Asia for thousands of years. It is a member of the ginger family and is one of the most commonly used spices in the world. Curcumin is the main component of turmeric and is responsible for its yellow color. Curcumin has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and has been shown to be helpful in treating a number of conditions, including arthritis, cancer, and heart disease.

There are a few ways to get curcumin into your system. You can eat turmeric as part of your diet, drink turmeric tea, or take turmeric supplements in tablet form. All of these methods are effective, but you may find that you tolerate some methods better than others.

Some runners swear by turmeric tea or supplement tablets as a way to speed up recovery after a marathon. Others claim that there is not enough scientific evidence to support this use of turmeric and that further research is needed. At this time, there is no clear consensus on whether or not turmeric can help with post-marathon recovery.


  • Can help reduce inflammation and pain, thus, improve recovery time.


  • It is considered a possible carcinogen, and should be avoided by people with known allergies or sensitivities.
  • When used for its purported benefits as an energy booster, turmeric can be toxic and can be harmful to the liver if taken in high doses.
  • Tumeric has antioxidant properties which can help to protect the body from damage caused by free radicals.

Post marathon Running to aid recovery

A growing trend among runners is using post marathon running as a way to aid in the active recovery process. Proponents of this method believe that running after a marathon helps to improve aerobic endurance and prevents rest days from becoming too much of a break.

On the plus side, post-marathon running can be a great way to improve your aerobic endurance and help with recovery. A moderate-intensity run can help flush out toxins released during the race, as well as increase blood flow and promote healing. It can also help to maintain your fitness level and reduce muscle soreness in the days following the marathon.

However, there are also some potential downsides to consider. Too much running after a marathon can actually delay recovery, so it’s important to listen to your body and take it easy on recovery days.

Related Article: Marathon nutrition: How to train, recover and fuel your way to achieve your marathon goals.

Marathon Recovery Tips
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