Running is a great way to kick start your metabolism and gain overall fitness, while also losing all those pesky pounds in an efficient and enjoyable way.
When you go for a run, you not only burn a lot of calories, but there are also many other side benefits as well. The first of these benefits is increased muscle mass and muscle toning.
Running really firms up your muscles, especially the muscle groups in your calves, thighs, back and abdomen. This gives you the coveted ‘washboard abs’ all for just going on a run for about an hour every day!
But while simply running in itself is good enough to get such good results, there are also a lot of tips and tricks which can maximize the effects of your exercise.
If you follow certain rituals and practices before you go for a run and after you come back from a run – also known as pre- run and post- run maintenance practices – then you are bound to get the ultimate results from your running!
This article in particular, we’ll deal with post- run maintenance strategies and tips on what to do post- going for a run, to gain the maximum effects from your workout!
Take time to cool down and stretch
This is the most basic of all post- workout maintenance tips, which unfortunately, still gets regularly ignored by the masses, with undesirable consequences.
There are three phases to the optimal cooling down practice after a running workout.
The first phase is the ‘cool down jog’. This is nothing more than simply slowing down your running speed to the point where the body metabolism has also slowed down to a more relaxed pace after the frantic calorie- burning workout it just received from your proper running.
Once you are down with the cooling down jog, you need to stretch. Cooling down signals your body that it is ready to be brought down to its resting metabolism from the intense workout it just received, but stretching is needed to ‘loosen’ your muscles.
Not stretching leads to tight and increased tone of the muscles all day, which not just leads to severe cramps but is also intensely painful in the long run, and reduces efficiency for the next running workout.
As such, cool down running and stretching are important steps to include in your post run maintenance regime!
Hot water compresses and baths for muscle relaxation
A hot soak in a warm tub of water isn’t a luxury every one can manage. But if it is something available to you, don’t fear to take advantage!
A warm water bath does wonders to relax and reduce cramped muscles like nothing else! Soaking of muscles after a good running work out in the hot water is a great post run maintenance practice to follow.
If having an actual bath is not possible, try opting for hot water bags and compression methods! That can reduce muscle soreness and increase your running efficiency to a great degree.
The eating and the drinking
No workout regime is complete without the proper diet and running is no different. After coming back from a running workout, never forget to eat high protein snacks like maybe a protein bar or a handful of nuts and fruits. This is greatly beneficial for building muscles and firming up muscle tone through running!
Another important thing to note is to drink more than enough water, all day long. In running, fluids are usually lost to a great degree. Replenishing this body water stock is essential to get the most out of your running!