My pilates practise is a great compliment to running. The discipline of pilates breathing really helps me through the runs and the core strength makes them much stronger and more controlled. Yesterday was my first running event of the year and I felt a bit out of practise, not with my running but with my routine both pre and post run.

I ran well and it felt faster than any run I’ve done before (even though it was 10 seconds slower than my PB for this course). Maybe the impromptu snow made me feel like I was running faster! For the first time I made it up the horrendous nearly 2km ascent of a vertical hill (mountain) without walking or stopping and that in itself felt like my victory! This ecstatic feeling may be why I felt slow on my post-run routine and I had to push myself to keep on track.

My post-run routine:

As soon as I crossed the finish line I slowed down gradually, stopped, and caught my breath. Deep, slow breaths until I was finally breathing at a normal pace. I know this sounds basic, but often people try to walk away or talk and can’t quite get the breath. Once my breathing was normal I felt great!

I immediately grabbed my bag and found my brownie. The sugar rush and the chocolate replenished what felt like every part of me and restored some energy to take in the finishing atmosphere.

Water, protein shake, banana. In this order. Extra hydration is important because although I take small amounts of water on the run it is never enough to keep you hydrated fully. My protein shake hopefully starts immediately repairing my muscle damage to reduce the soreness the day after (it was worked so far!), and the banana, for replenishing the lost electrolytes like magnesium and potassium that I will have lost through sweat.

Stretching. Always a bug bear of mine when people don’t stretch after events! After this run every muscle in my lower body ached immediately upon stopping. I could feel them tightening up already so stretches for the major muscle groups, quads, hamstrings, glutes, calves were all done. Nice long stretches too to really let the muscles relax. We then walked around for a bit to loosen off before the long drive back home. You can try this Feel good stretch workout here to loosen off at home.

Do you run? Or mix any sports together? I’d love to know what works!