After the race is before the race

3. May 2017

When preparing for your competition, you are laying down a foundation so you can run or cycle your race as successfully as possible. This foundation not only serves your ability to perform, but also your ability to recover. This means, the better you train, the faster you will recover from each individual training unit, not to mention the race itself.

With these tips, you will recover faster:

On the day of the race

Be proud of what you have achieved!

You have spent weeks or even months preparing for your goal. You can now be proud that you have achieved it.

Start compensating your fluid loss

When running, you need to cool your body down. As a result, you sweat and get thirsty. Try to correct the fluid deficit as quickly as possible, but remember that the body can only metabolise approx. 0.3 litres per hour and alcohol delays absorption.

Replenish your carbohydrate stores.

The sooner you start ingesting “fast” carbohydrates (sports drink, sports bars, banana) after a race, the sooner this will be stored as glycogen in your muscles. Insider tip: the ingestion rate is even higher when you combine fast carbohydrates with protein. It makes sense to eat a "normal" meal after about two hours.

Support the lactate breakdown by cooling down

The lactate elimination curve is very positively influenced when you end the cycle or run in a relaxed manner. Give yourself 15 to 20 minutes before showering to accelerate the muscular recovery.

Make use of the benefits of compression clothing

To increase venous return and reduce inflammatory reactions, it is worthwhile wearing compression clothing after the competition.

In the days that follow

Make sure you get enough sleep

Sleep is the best medicine. After the "damage" you caused during the competition, it will take a while until you are fully operational again. Getting enough sleep leads to an increased release of growth hormones, which positively influences regeneration and cell growth.

Eat healthy

You demanded a lot from your body on the day of the competition. Healing the micro-injuries requires time and the right elements from food. You therefore need to make sure you eat wholesome food that is rich in vital substances with enough protein, minerals, trace elements and vitamins.

Reduce your training

"Each mile one day" - this golden rule depicts how long you should wait after a running competition before you start intensive training. Example: after a half marathon (13 miles), you should wait 13 days.

Treat yourself to a massage

You have earned a massage during the days after the competition. This should help to restore your normal muscle tone.

Choose a new goal

Goals motivate. Therefore, in the days right after the competition, pick out a new goal from the Datasport calendar that’s worth training for!