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You Ran Your First Race. Now What?

There are plenty of articles detailing the in’s and out’s of what to do up to race day and on race day, but what happens after the race?!  Here are a few details to help you understand what happens after the glory of crossing the finish line, regardless of what distance you are tackling:

Keep moving
The worst thing you can do after you cross the finish line is to just stop.  Most finish line chutes have volunteers that encourage you to keep moving along, but make sure that you do.  Blood has been flowing through your body to help you make it through all those miles and it needs a slow decent to stopping that rapid motion instead of just a complete halt.

Well maybe not a margarita, instantly after the race.  But at the very least get a water or other electrolyte-filled drink and sip on it as your body starts to calm down.  Even if you aren’t dehydrated, the additional fluids will definitely help your body recover.  If you are enjoying a post-race alcoholic beverage, try and alternate sips of water to keep your body hydrated.

Grab some food
A four course meal might not be the best idea, but some sort of snack will help your body in its recovery mode as well.  The ideal snack would be something that has carbs and protein in it within about 30 minutes post-race.

At this point, you should be able to tell if there is a part of your body that is tight or uncomfortable.  Stretching your muscles post-exercise is a critical part of your recovery process.  Bonus if there are massage therapists on hand after the race to give you a quick 15 minute massage in the areas that are most effected post-race.

Get into dry clothes
As soon as you can, try and switch out your clothes into something that is dry and comfortable.  Prep your post-race clothes before the race so you don’t forget them.  Wet clothes post-race can contribute to chafing and if its chilly outside, won’t help that situation.  And most importantly, make sure your medal is still visible!

Grab your supporters and any other friends you made along the race course and celebrate your accomplishments!

Get your Fins Up, throw high-fives around, thank race volunteers, and cheer on others that finish after you.

If you are a first-time racer or a seasoned runner, the Run to Margaritaville – Pensacola Beach 5K or half marathon is the race for you!  Last year’s event saw a record number of first-timers and with a flat, fast course with views for days, the race is set up to be a friendly event.  So why not stay in paradise and earn your first race medal with Margaritaville!

Breathe in, Breathe out, Run on!