What to Avoid After Running: The 5 Mistakes *Almost* Every Beginner Makes
If you’re new to running, you might not be aware of the mistakes you can make after running.
In this article, we will cover some key information on what to avoid after running, including rehydration and cooling down.
Let’s get started.
What Not To Do After a Run: Don’t Make These 5 Mistakes
Running is a high-impact sport, and there are a variety of MISTAKES that you can make when you first begin running.
These mistakes include but are not limited to:
1. Skipping Rehydration
There’s no getting away from the fact that running makes you sweat.
When you run, your body, therefore, loses lots of water as you sweat.
As a result, it is essential to REPLENISH your body with water before dehydration hits you.
Hydrating your body or drinking electrolytes will help your body gain the energy it has lost.
The key is to do this BEFORE you begin feeling dehydrated.
Suppose you don’t usually take water with you but know that you’re going on a long run in the heat on a sweltering day. In that case, you must carry water with you on a run to ensure you don’t get dehydrated.
2. Skipping The Cool Down Or Recovery
Not paying attention to cooldowns can result in sore legs after running, or even injury.
Explicitly adding a cooling down is essential if you are a beginner:
- When you’re on a run, you will need to cool down for a minimum of five minutes before you stop running altogether.
- When doing your cool down, you will need to gradually reduce your speed before you slow to a walk for the last minutes.
- Be sure to time yourself so you’re sure that your cooling down period has been sufficient enough.
After you have been for a run, you will need to make sure that you STRETCH your muscles.
This will help to stretch everything out and will help to minimize the pain that you’ll experience due to Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness.
In addition to this, you can soothe them with the help of foam rollers.
You will also need to think about recovery.
There is a good chance that you have never considered supplementing your diet with protein powder. But this is a great way to replenish your muscles’ amino acids after a workout.
While you can get your protein intake from other sources, having a protein shake straight after your run can be a super convenient way to manage your post-run recovery.
Is It Bad to Sit Immediately After Running?
Most of the time, sitting down immediately following a run will do absolutely no harm. But, you may feel better if you walk around for a few minutes and gradually drop your heart rate.
If you just sit down, it is not good for blood flow. Walking helps your recovery by keeping blood flowing in your body, which repairs and refuels it.
Cooldown allows your body to recover and READJUST to rest.
3. Not Eating The Right Nutritious Foods
The last mistake leads us nicely to the next point: Nutrition.
Generally speaking, a runner’s diet needs more nutrients than an average person’s due to the fact that running uses up a tonne of energy.
- When you run, your muscles are engaged in a high-intensity workout.
- Eating the right foods is essential to support your body and its ENERGY levels before and after exercise.
- If you don’t replenish your body with all the nutrients that it needs, it will not have the resources needed to promote muscle growth and recovery.
Bearing this in mind, you will need to make sure you are eating a balanced diet full of enough carbs and proteins as well as vitamins and minerals after every workout.
This is essential to refuel your body in general but is especially important to consider following your run.
4. Skipping A Healthy Sleep Pattern
If you’ve got UNHEALTHY habits when it comes to your sleep pattern, this can have a significant impact on your body after you’ve been on a run.
This comes down to the fact that sleeping plays a crucial role in recovery, as it helps your body to recover from its workouts.
- As running requires you to expend a lot of energy and involves working your whole body, it makes sense that you will need a DECENT amount of sleep after to feel your best.
- Rest should never be underestimated when you’re regularly running. Be sure to factor a few extra hours of sleep into your sleep pattern, even if it means heading to bed at an earlier hour!
While this might take a little time to implement into your routine, your body will thank you for it when you have a healthy sleeping pattern.
5. Not Cleaning Off The Sweat
As running requires a fair bit of energy, it should come as no surprise that you’ll be sweating quite a bit when you’re doing it.
However, you might be more surprised to learn that not CLEANING off the sweat is another common mistake that beginners can make at the start.
While you might not be able to shower after every single run you take, this doesn’t mean that you can let the sweat dry itself off.
- Cleaning off and changing clothes promotes good circulation, which speeds up recovery after running.
- Not cleaning off sweat can lead to a variety of problems, including issues related to bacteria, not to mention how itchy and uncomfortable you will feel if you don’t clean up.
- If you don’t have access to a shower after your run, at the very least you should take a dry towel and wipe off sweat from the most sweaty areas such as the armpits, inside the elbows, behind the knees, and the back of your neck.
That being said, you will want to make sure that you wipe any area that feels particularly sweaty.
The Bottom Line
Like most runners, you probably have a lot going on during the week. But attempting to save time by skipping some post-run recovery activities is a bad idea.
If you want to get better at running (runner’s high, anyone?), it’s best to incorporate rehydration, cooldowns, etc., in your running routine.