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13601 Views 7 Replies Latest reply: Aug 23, 2010 6:45 PM by Surfing_Vol
msucj21 Pro 58 posts since
Mar 19, 2010
Currently Being Moderated

Aug 2, 2010 10:51 AM

Post Half Marathon Recovery

I just completed my first half marathon yesterday in Chicago.  I am an intermediate runner who runs about 25-30 miles per week with one long run mixed in usually.  I want to know what you would suggest as a good recovery week from the half. 

I was super sore after but today I am feeling better.  I am itching to get back out and run, even if it is easy pace.  I am not the fastest in the world but I am very strong in the endurance area.  I also get to go up north Michigan this weekend and hopefully do some trail running!

Any advice will help.  Thanks!


3/21-Shamrock Shuffle 8K- 46:24
4/10-Wrigley Early Start 5K- 27:36

4/25-Ravenswood Run 5K- 27:18
5/1-CPD Run to Remember 5K- 26:54
5/29-Soldier Field 10 Mile- 1:36:42

6/6- United Run for the Zoo 10K- 57:55

7/11- Utica Boilermaker Road Race- 1:31:29
8/1-Rock n Roll Half Marathon: 2:13:57


  • skypilot77 Legend 1,077 posts since
    Dec 16, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Aug 2, 2010 11:06 AM (in response to msucj21)
    Re: Post Half Marathon Recovery

    I've done 4 half's this year and I have treated the recovery week as a free week.


    I rested one day, and then slowly stretched it out -- maybe doing 18-20 miles for the week.


    The one thing I have done is late in the week put in a speed workout. I figured since I worked the endurance muscles then the speed muscles could probably use a day. I have found some of my fastest speed workouts have come during the week following a half marathon.

  • BOSNPM We're Not Worthy 2,482 posts since
    Nov 20, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Aug 2, 2010 11:07 AM (in response to msucj21)
    Re: Post Half Marathon Recovery

    MSUCJ21 I think it all depends on your body, my base is between 30-55 mpw depending on the time, I have run lots of 1/2s and three fulls.  I rest the day after a half, do a slow recovery run the next day then just get right back into my schedule.  The recovery runs usually get all of my soreness out.  If you are sore don't do anything hard, just easy runs or rest.  Everyone is different, listen to your body but that is the hard part.  Congards on your half.

  • lenzlaw Community Moderator 10,539 posts since
    Jan 18, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Aug 2, 2010 12:57 PM (in response to BOSNPM)
    Re: Post Half Marathon Recovery

    I'm pretty much with BOSNPM on this one.  The traditional recovery period is 1 day per mile of the race.  So no hard or long runs during those 13 days.  At the same time, listen to your body.  If you get to Friday or Saturday and feel ready for a faster paced run, go ahead.  But be just as ready to shut it down if it doesn't feel right.  I've done a pretty good 10K a week after a marathon.  After others, it's taken me two weeks or more to get back to a average workout pace.




  • JasonFitz1 Legend 578 posts since
    Jun 19, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    4. Aug 2, 2010 2:14 PM (in response to msucj21)
    Re: Post Half Marathon Recovery

    My standard recovery for half-marathons and planned breaks is one week completely off. No running, no cycling, no other exercise. I might consider some light core work, but other than that, I like to sit on my ***


    I might throw in some flexibility drills, but I would keep them very easy and it would be after 3-4 days of inactivity. The body and mind needs rest; it's worth it. Getting back into your training, start about 20-30% lower than your previous week's mileage, avoid any hard workouts, and cut your long run by the same amount. You can build up over the course of 2-4 weeks to what you were doing before the half.


    A marathon is a whole other beast and requires at least 2 weeks and then a much slower build-up to where you were before.


    Good luck!

    - Fitz.

    Strength Running
  • neslonotnilc Rookie 7 posts since
    Jul 30, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    5. Aug 5, 2010 9:58 AM (in response to msucj21)
    Re: Post Half Marathon Recovery

    I have spent a day or two resting after a long hard race.  If I am still sore I go to a swimming pool and the leg movements of swimming seems to work out all the lactate build up in my legs.

  • Runnergal262 Legend 514 posts since
    Sep 1, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Aug 23, 2010 6:25 PM (in response to msucj21)
    Re: Post Half Marathon Recovery

    Congrats on the 1st 1/2!! That is a great feat.  My advice, take at least a week if not two off, especially if you are sore.  Light crosstraining definitely not out of the question.  If you are itching to run, make sure you take it easy both in terms of pace and distance, but I'd seriously take at least a whole week off running all together.  The last thing you want to do is come back too soon from a long run where you gave it your all, i.e your race.

  • Surfing_Vol Legend 848 posts since
    Nov 6, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    7. Aug 23, 2010 6:45 PM (in response to msucj21)
    Re: Post Half Marathon Recovery

    Jeff Galloway's advice from a 2007 post ( is simple and works: walk and run and rebuild slowly.  He's more specific than me, but that is the general gist.


    Surfing Vol

    "Victory through attrition!"

    Charleston Half-Marathon 1/15/2011 -- 1:52:03

    The Scream! Half-Marathon 7/16/2011 -- 1:56:00

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