Ok, so after white-knucking it and whimpering up and down the stairs today, I decided it was time to do what I should have done yesterday — take an ice bath.
Ice baths are a great way to reduce swelling, inflammation and speed recovery after a tough workout. I know better. Bertha and I did them after every long run during our marathon training together. We sat in the icy river for 20 min after every run – and we always felt great afterwards and hardly had any soreness the next day. I also used them last winter when I was suffering through my injury.
I guess I was just a little lazy (or cocky) yesterday and didn’t think I needed one that bad. Wrong answer! hee hee. So…. I decided to look online and see if there were any other tips that could make these chilly dips any more easy to endure. And.. I came up with a few:
1. – wear a fleece top (somehow it hadn’t occurred to me before that my top didn’t have to be stark naked and shivering during this ordeal).
2. – Bring a hot drink – tea, coffee, soup or in my case — mocha cappuccino – Mmmmmm.
3. – Bring something to eat. I brought some warmed up homemade, buttered wheat bread, a handful of blueberries (since I know they can speed healing) and two fun size 100 grand candy bars (what?! I earned them yesterday by burining about 2000 calories!)
4. – Finally – bring something to do. I brought my cell phone in case I wanted to whine and text while in the tub (and because it would keep track of the time – 20 – 25 min is best for an ice bath to work its magic) and a copy of Runner’s World magazine.
Amazingly, once I stopped screaming like a little girl (I swear I only carried on like that for the first three minutes), then I settled in, drank my hot cappuccino, ate my lunch and read my magazine and suprisingly — enjoyed the whole ordeal in the end. A little secret (once you’re numb – it’s kind of fun.)
I felt refreshed afterwards, less sore and a little better overall. I dressed and walked on the treadmill for 10 minutes to loosen my legs up a little more and get that lactic acid moving along and then stretched gently for another 15 minutes. I feel much better.