Recover Faster Training for the Suwanee Kiwanis Shamrock 5k

Recover Faster Training for the Suwanee Kiwanis Shamrock 5K

The Suwanee Kiwanis Shamrock 5K Run is coming up in March 18th meaning there’s about a month to prepare for the race. Sometimes we forget to let our bodies recover appropriately in order to prevent injury. On the flip side, if there is not enough training then injury can occur during or after the run. Personally, I am training for the Atlanta Mission Run Feb 18th in preparation for the Shamrock 5k which is a Peachtree Certified Qualifier. This means I’m noticing and experiencing a few aches and pain that need my attention. I don’t have too much time to train so I’ve been doing some accessory work I learned as a physical therapist to recover faster to train longer. Here are 4 ways to recover faster training for the Suwanee Kiwanis Shamrock 5k.

Before running, Warm Up and Stretch

Before your run, be sure to warm up and stretch the legs. The Calves and the Quads are used the most when running to absorb the impact of each step. A runner makes about 6 thousand steps during a 5k meaning a lot of impact. Make sure you stretch the quads/thighs for 2 minutes and then the calves for 2 minutes. Also, Warm up with 100 skips with a jump rope or 50 jumping jacks.

After running, Cool Down and Stretch

After the run, be sure to cool down and stretch. The same muscles I talked about above are now full of lactic acid that built up during the run and need to be pumped out. The heart helps pump blood to the tissues, now we need the muscle’s help to pump the used fluid out to the lymph nodes which are considered the “waste management system” of the body. After a strenuous run, walk for 10 minutes back to your starting point. Once you’ve reached the starting point, stretch the calves and the quads the same way you stretched before the race.

Roll Out With a Foam Roller

Top athletes get massages after each training session. Unfortunately, I’m not a professional athlete so I need a more economical method for massages (other than getting my employees to massage me). This is where the magic of the foam roller comes in. If you don’t own a foam roller, get a foam roller! It is one of the best tools for recovery. With it you can easily massage your calves, your quads, and your low back after the run. Massage helps move lactic acid that is built up in the muscle resulting in less soreness and better muscle performance the next day. Spend 2 minutes rolling on each muscle (right calf, left calf, right quad, left quad). This will also help for a good night’s rest and better morning.

Get Dry Needling

When I’m really hurting and sore, I needle myself. It’s something only Physical Therapists can do so be sure to contact our office or search for an office that does Dry Needling. This technique I perform often on Crossfit athletes and people with sports injury for fast and effective results. The way it works is by decreasing muscle tightness helping blood flow into your muscles. The way NewCare does it, there is minimal pain and fast recovery so contact us for more information.

Follow these steps and you will find yourself less fatigued and ready to train the next morning. Happy Running!


Michael Wang

DPT, MBA, DN Cert.
Dr. Wang earned his Physical Therapy Degree from Emory University School of Medicine and has been practicing Sports Physical Therapy for the past 5 years.