Saturday, January 11, 2014

Post Long Run – Hot Bath

Several weeks ago, I came home from a 24 mile long run in the freezing rain, and I couldn't stop shivering. Bundling up just didn't help.

Usually, after a long run, I follow the common advice of a taking an ice bath. However, since I was already shivering, I was certainly could not see this happening.

Instead, I turned the bath tub facet to a nice warm temperature. I fumbled around and found this aroma therapy bath oil from Bath and Body Works that I had been meaning to try. I dumped in a few spoonfuls. I, then, settled in to warm up and relax.

When I finish a long run, the first thing, that happens as my body starts to cool, I start to stiffen up. Moving around becomes a lot more difficult. After all, running 24 miles puts a lot of stress on my body.

About 30 minutes later, I crawled out of the tub.

This is when I noticed something interesting. While I still felt the fatigue in my legs, the stiffness that usually last for hours was not present. Actually for the rest of the day, I felt a lot better.

So I began a new post long run regiment. After each long run, I forgo the ice bath in favor of this aroma oil therapy batch and each time felt better.

I have been trying to rationalize why this was occurring. Today, while running with Jeff, I was telling him about it. He brought up the fact that because cold weather, he felt less inflammation in his legs. This may explain why I have not experienced any negative side effects. Running creates inflammation, yes, we all agree. However, my working theory now is that running in colder temperatures lessons the inflammation.  

Other than my own experiences, I have not hard facts to back up my theory.

I do know one thing for sure. It is far less taxing on me to climb into a warm bath than to climb in to a cold bath.

Sharing one thought at time,
The Cool Down Runner

No comments: