Caring for your muscles after running a race is a must. A combination of exercise, sleep and nutrition will work wonders.

Running recovery

Foam rolling

Like a massage, foam rolling eases and soothes sore muscles and allows you to target troubled muscles specifically. For optimal results try and foam roll everyday or as often as you can. It will help to promote blood circulation, which will help remove waste products and release any tension.

Sleep

Adequate levels of sleep help to stimulate mental health, promote hormonal balance, and provide time for muscular recovery. Studies have shown that athletes that have higher amounts of sleep have improved performance, compared to those who get less. The optimal amount should be between 7-10 hours.



Train Hard, Recover Well

Olympic medallist and Healthspan ambassador Iwan Thomas gives some tips on how to help your body recover after training.

Food your aching muscles will love

Your body is particularly receptive in the 30-35 minutes after exercising and this is the critical time for nourishing it.

In a 2010 study carried out on recreational marathon runners given either concentrated tart cherry juice or a placebo, the cherry drinkers reported improved muscle recovery. They were found to have less damaged muscles immediately after the race, had lower levels of inflammation and recovered muscle strength quicker.

Eggs contain all nine essential amino acids (the building blocks of protein) which help to reduce muscle damage in the body. The yolks also contain anti-inflammatory omega 3 fatty acids and a small amount of immune-boosting vitamin D.

A 2012 study on blueberries shows how these antioxidant and anthocyanin-rich little dark berries are bursting with nutrients that help to accelerate recovery in muscle function and strength.

Let supplements help

Healthspan’s Elite Performance Cherry contains a concentrated amount of natural nutrients including anthocyanins, antioxidants and flavonoids. The cherries also contain melatonin, the sleep hormone.

Research has shown whey protein supplementation helps athletes with muscle recovery and building lean muscle mass. This type of protein, found naturally in milk, is rapidly absorbed and contains a high percentage of amino acids including all essential amino acids and leucine. Leucine is an important player in muscle protein synthesis, the process in which the body repairs and regenerates muscle. Try Healthspan’s Elite Essential Whey Protein Concentrate to enable this muscle-building process to take place.

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Nothing beats a healthy, balanced diet to provide all the nutrients we need. But when this isn't possible, supplements can help. This article isn't intended to replace medical advice. Please consult your healthcare professional before trying supplements or herbal medicines.

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