Recovery after your Great North Run

September 8, 2017

Recovery after your Great North Run

You’ve followed a strict, structured training program for months and you’ve successfully completed The Great North Run. Congratulations! However, you need to ensure your recovery plan is just as good. Correct post running strategies are essential in your body’s full and complete recovery.

Physiotherapy Matters 5 TOP TIPS!!

  • REPAIR (Cool down and Stretch)
  • REST

Your body will be dehydrated, energy stores are depleted, temporary muscle damage and then there’s mental fatigue. For full recovery, you need to address all four of those factors. Otherwise you’ll increase your risk of injury and won’t be able to perform to your full potential next time.


The body requires constant hydration, make sure you drink enough to replenish your depleted fluid levels after the race. Due to loss of vital nutrients you need to refuel essential electrolytes and proteins to optimise recovery, try a recovery drink 4:1 carbohydrate: protein ratio.


Running long distances can cause muscular fatigue, lactic acid builds up and microscopic tears in our muscle tissue. After your run (within 30 minutes) make sure you allow time to cool down, gentle walk and generously stretch all of your muscles (focus on major muscle groups such as quads, gluteals, hamstrings, calves) DON’T WAIT UNTIL YOU GET HOME!

A light snack of 20g protein afterwards will help to promote muscle repair and easily digestible carbohydrate to restore energy. Ice baths although uncomfortable, will help minimise tomorrows muscle pains and soreness 10-15 minutes in the tub.


Within 2 hours Ensure you provide your body with a larger high quality meal with a good amount of carbohydrates, proteins and fats to refuel depleted sources in the muscles and restore your energy levels.


You’ve done the hard bit, keep yourself warm after the race to prevent your body temperature cooling too quickly. When able change yourself into some warm, dry clothes and comfortable shoes. Get yourself booked in for a massage at Physiotherapy Matters to help reduced muscle tension, aid circulation and removal of lactic acid. Take some time to reflect on the achievement you have made


Ensure the evening of the race you get a good night’s sleep to enable the recovery system to work as well as possible. Adequate rest from running after the Great North Run is essential physically and mentally, a few days afterwards you may want to try walking, swimming or light exercise such as cross-trainer or cycling for 25-30 minutes to get your muscles working without too much stress. You should avoid any long/hard training runs immediately after the GNR (4-5 days), some experts suggest resting from intense running one day for each mile you completed.

Physiotherapy Matters are here to help if you sustain any injuries or need advice on your recovery. Please call us on 0191 285 8701 to book in or talk to one of our experienced Physiotherapists.

Good luck on race day and happy recovering!download

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