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Commonly referred to as the 27th mile, your marathon recovery begins the moment you cross the finish line. Your recovery plan is as important as your marathon training plan.

Here are recommendations to assist in developing your recovery plan.


  • Avoid resuming running too quickly and allow your body and mind to fully recover from the rigorous 26.2-mile journey.

  • Focus on easy to moderate effort with low or zero-impact activities during the initial 2 weeks following a marathon:

      Cycling (road, mountain, or stationary)

      Restorative Yoga

  • Replace nutrients, electrolytes, and fluids.

  • Get sufficient sleep.

  • Ice baths immediately after the marathon to reduce inflammation.

  • Hot Epsom salt baths 3-4 days after the marathon to improve circulation and promote healing.

  • Wait 3-4 days before scheduling a sports massage.

  • Don’t return to running until all soreness and discomfort have disappeared. Once you resume training, your workouts should mirror the 2-3 week taper prior to the marathon.

  • Avoid faster running and hills upon your initial return to running.

  • Experiencing a significant void or even depression after a marathon is quite common and can impact your recovery.

  • Share your feelings and emotions with others.

  • Be patient and give yourself grace, particularly if your race didn’t go as well as expected.

  • Reconnect with family and friends. Send handwritten notes and spend time with everyone who supported you throughout your marathon journey.

  • Your mental health can improve by reconnecting with other interests and people who may have been neglected during months of marathon preparation.

  • Don’t allow the marathon to be the last step in your fitness journey.

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