Thankfully, I had been smart with my training plan and scheduled a massage for yesterday. And let’s just say it was one of the best decisions ever.
My muscles (especially in my legs) feel relaxed and I definitely don’t feel as “scrunched up” like I usually do! I always knew that massages were important for runners, but the reasons were never really clear. After a long talk with Lisa from Brightway Massage, I know understand the importance of massages for runners and athletes. The amount of strain on a runner’s body is absolutely brutal. And massage is just another tool a runner can use to reduce that strain and to become a better and more efficient runner.
- For runners, massages will help for both performance recovery before and after big races.
- Massage improves circulation throughout the body and also encourages nutrients to move into the muscle tissues.
- During a massage, your muscles will be stretched and your joints will be moved through their proper range of motion.
- Endorphins are also released and will travel through the body to reduce pain in a natural way.
- It removes lactic acid which builds up in your muscles causing soreness
- A massage decreases stress and increases focus, perfect for before a race.
- For injuries (like my ACL injury), massages will help to break down some of the scar tissue, which will help your muscles, ligaments, and tendons.
- Regular sports massage can improve muscle the flexibility of tight muscles as well as correct imbalances in the body.
For any runner or athlete out there, I highly suggest massage. Although it is a “luxury”, it’s so important to aide in your body’s recovery. I want to be active in fighting injury and I believe massage is a great tool for that. My massage was anything but relaxing yesterday. My legs, especially my left calf and IT Band were dying. But they are now pain-free and I am excited to go on a hopefully peaceful run tonight!
I know that not many people can afford regular massages (I am extremely lucky in that my health insurance helps cover a significant portion of my massages.) Check with your insurance to see if you have a similar plan for “alternative care” or look for massage deals in websites such as Groupon!