ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Sports and Recreation»
  • Individual Sports

Recovering After the Long Run

Updated on August 15, 2017
kweingart profile image

Kelly Weingart is a trail runner, recruiter and freelance writer that lives in Sacramento, California with her Australian Shepherd, Reilly.

What are you craving after your long run? Take the survey at the end of the article!

So you've been training hard for months and each week your mileage is creeping up into the double or maybe even triple digits, deepening on what type of races you're training for. Refueling immediately after and on recovery days is essential to your training plan--almost as important as the miles you are putting in. What is your body telling you it needs, what are you craving after the long runs and what is the difference?


After running for hours, it is easy to justify eating whatever you want on your recovery day. I just started pushing my mileage up into a range that I have never visited before and, let me tell you, I have started eating everything in sight! I started to find that I was recovering from my recovery days and was feeling bloated and sluggish for a few days after my planned rest day. Now, I believe that it isn't how much I was eating or the calories consumed, but what kinds of calories I was consuming. Filling up on burgers, pizza and ice cream was making me feel like all my hard work was going to waste.




After reading more about running recovery and nutrition, I started reading more about the ketogenic diet and benefits of turning your engine into a fat burning machine. The ketogenic diet is a low or no carb diet that forces the body into a state of ketosis whereby instead of burning carbs (no more pasta binges the night before a race) your body starts burning fat. Sounded great, but after consulting with a primary care doc, I was told that the waste products generated by this type of diet would have long term effects on the GI system; while you would be getting energy from fats, you would also be processing more fats in general, which as a rule of thumb, isn't really easy on your digestive system. What to eat then?


As corny as it sounds, it turns out that everything in moderation is still a useful cliché. Eating a balanced meal with fruits, veggies, proteins and lean fats (even if its more of it) left me feeling less bloated, having more energy and I tended to recover faster. Sounds like common sense, right?








After the long runs, when I found myself craving all the bad things, I allowed myself to have some of the bad things but I also made sure that I got more of the good things in first so that my appetite was controlled before diving into that bag of potato chips! Making sure that you're property hydrated first and drinking more water than you think you need will help stave off the post-run binges. Recovery drinks high in protein are also an easy way to supplement after the long run and tend to replenish calories faster before you can get to the fridge.


What I was craving, typically, after a long run was salt so I started implementing sodium intake into my nutrition plan during the run and alas my cravings for potato chips subsided! Determining what my body is telling me that it needs and what it just plain wants is still a work in progress, but so far in my experimentation what I eat on my recovery day really effects my ability to push through the miles the rest of the week. I have become more mindful of what Im eating on recovery days and how much of it Im consuming and I am feeling the benefits of balance.


Your recovery goals my be different from mine and understanding your baseline is important. For me, I have some weight to lose to get to my ideal 'race weight' and becoming lighter is one of my goals that is part of my training plan so being mindful of the binges and splurges after the long runs is important so that I don't backslide. Good nutrition is important to everyone's recovery, but if you are already at your race weight you may find another approach to post-run refueling more valuable to your training program. Ultimately, knowing your body, knowing what feels good overall for your training plan is important and its up to you! And giving into cravings a little is always better than not at all -- after all, you deserve it :)



What do you Crave after your Long Run?

What is your go-to calorie bomb after the long run? What do you crave as you round up your miles for the week and what is your favorite reward?

See results

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is used to quickly and efficiently deliver files such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisements has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)