• 25/05/2024 00:35

How much rest do you need after a long run: expert opinion

After finishing a long run, be it an extended weekend route or a milestone distance you've been aiming for, it's natural to want to give yourself a well-deserved rest. If you are in doubt about whether you need to rest after running, you can exhale.

ContentDo you need to rest after running and for how long? Consider the type of shoes and terrain while running. What to do on a day off?

According to WomanEL, rest is key. You want a break that isn't so short that you risk getting injured next time, but not so long that you feel like you're starting from scratch when you go running again. How to find the golden mean? Read on.

Do you need to rest after running and for how long

 “As a general rule, 24 hours is a good rest period after a long run. Some people need a little more time. While others may need another recovery run the next day, which is a shorter, easier run to help muscles recover,” explains Nicola Cowie, running coach and women's fitness specialist.

However, she stresses that if long distance is completely new to you – for example, you've just run your first 10 miles (16 km) – you may need to rest for a little longer than a day. “If I were coaching someone who had just completed their first half marathon, I would give them the option of going for a short run of about 10 minutes or a walk the next day. And then I probably wouldn’t plan another race for the next three days.”

Dr Alan Ruddock, Associate Professor in Sports Physiology and Performance at Sheffield Hallam University, agrees that 24 hours is the ideal time to rest. “When I create training plans for a runner, we usually do no more than four running workouts per week, including one long run. This means about 24 hours of recovery between workouts.”

Consider the type of shoes and terrain when running

If you ran on difficult types of terrain, you you will need even more time to rest, Source: freepik.com

It's also worth considering whether there are any differences between your last long run and your usual running program. Dr Ruddock explains that if you've completed a long run and recently changed running shoes, your muscles may be fine. But your feet may need a little more time to recover due to new shoes.

Changing the difficulty of your long run can also affect your rest. If you tried a hillier route than usual, it will put more pressure on your body. “If you end up running with a lot of uphill and downhill when you're used to running on flat roads, you'll need to take that into account when deciding whether you need more rest,” says Dr. Ruddock.

< h2 id="%d1%87%d1%82%d0%be-%d0%b4%d0%b5%d0%bb%d0%b0%d1%82%d1%8c-%d0%b2-%d0% b2%d1%8b%d1%85%d0%be%d0%b4%d0%bd%d0%be%d0%b9-%d0%b4%d0%b5%d0%bd%d1%8c" class=" rb-heading-index-2 wp-block-heading">What to do on a day off?

Every runner's approach to rest is different. After a half marathon, we'd be happy to trade early morning workouts for a couple extra hours in bed, but many people experience runner's guilt if they take a day or two off. While this obviously isn't a healthy way of thinking, Cowie says it's a really common feeling. But rethinking how you look at your rest days can be helpful.

“Sometimes it can be helpful to rethink rest as preparing your body for the next race. After all, during the rest period, your body adapts to running. When you run, your body and muscles are put under stress, and in order for you to run better, your body must adapt and cope better with stress.”

However, if you have planned a rest day but you are still itching to exercise sports, a more “active” form of relaxation is ideal. For example, stretching, yoga or massage with a roller. Cowie recommends exercises that work different muscles and develop your flexibility. They give your body time to recover since you are not putting additional stress on your body.

Notice that your muscles are shaking during a workout? Does this mean that you are developing them or have traumatized them? Here's the answer.

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