Maximize your miles: Why should Massage be part of my training plan?

Massage is one of the best allies you can have while training and post the London Marathon. Why?, as part of your training sessions can help stretch and relax tense muscles, remove adhesions between your fascia and muscles, and increase muscle blood flow which  leads to better performance and reduces injuries. After-running massage can aid in reducing perceived pain and soreness, improve immune function and lower inflammation, and improves your overall well-being by reducing anxiety, stress and fatigue. Now, let’s go deeper on what massage can do for you and how…

When should I have a massage?

You can have a massage at any moment. However, it is important for you to know  that the timing and technique of massage largely depends on your needs  and when the race is. In other words, getting the wrong type of massage too close to the day of the marathon can impair performance and even result in an increased risk of injury, while a lighter massage technique, like lymphatic drainage,  may be beneficial at any point before a race day to promote better lymphatic and blood flow, also, boosting your immune system. This massage should be performed from 3 to 5 days before the race.

On the other hand, post-marathon massage is key to muscle recovery, but it is recommended to wait at least two hours after the race ends to avoid impairing lactic acid removal and to allow the muscles to start the healing process more thoroughly. After this period of time, you will have all the benefits of massage. This massage can be performed from 2 to 72 hours after the race.

What is the best massage for runners?

There are people who suggest a specific type of massage for runners, but actually what really works (and this is the way you know your therapist is an experienced professional) is when your massage therapist uses different techniques during the session. You may question why, and the answer is because the treatment should be tailored according to your needs.

For example, during a massage session, you may notice therapeutic techniques aimed at increasing blood and lymphatic flow throughout your body and easing muscle tension, or deep tissue massage, which is more targeted and manipulates the muscles more rigorously to help with the healing process and prevent a buildup of scar tissue.

The commercial name of this massage  is Sports Massage as it  combines different massage modalities. It also specializes in treating  sports injuries, but a therapist with experience will be able to tailor the massage to your needs.

Why should massage be part of my training plan for the London Marathon?

Some of the most important reason you should include massage as part of your training plan and post event recovery treatment are:

Injury Prevention

Regular massage can help identify tight spots, adhesions, or imbalances in the muscles and fascia, allowing them to be addressed before they develop into more serious injuries. It can also improve flexibility and range of motion, reducing the risk of strains and sprains.

Pain Relief

Many runners experience muscle tightness, discomfort or pain, especially in areas like the calves, hamstrings, and quadriceps. Massage helps you to  reduce tension and pain by promoting relaxation and loosening tight muscles.

Improved Performance

After certain number of massage sessions you may notice how massage helps you by:

  • enhancing muscle recovery, 
  • reducing muscle tension, 
  • increasing flexibility, 
  • running faster and farther,
  • doing less effort while training or during the race.

Muscle Recovery

Running puts  significant strain on muscles, as a result, you may have soreness and fatigue. Massage and MLD help you to speed up  muscle recovery by increasing blood and lymphatic flow to the muscles, which aids in the removal of metabolic waste products like lactic acid.

Mental Relaxation

Training for the Marathon is physically and mentally demanding. Massage helps you to relax, reducing stress and anxiety and promoting a general sense of wellbeing. 

What are pre-event and post-event massages?

Pre-event massage 

Pre-event massage can be stimulating, it uses massage techniques such as hacking, kneading and beating and pounding.  It is vigorous and prepares you mentally for performance. Also a  pre-event massage can  be relaxing and the aim is to help to reduce stress levels  and calm nerves before the Marathon or event. It should be performed 2 or 5 days before the race.

Post -event massage 

Post-event massage uses light pressured techniques alongside passive stretching to help regain normal muscle resting lengths after strenuous exercise. A post-event massage helps you treat and prevent delayed onset muscles, fatigue and tightness.

In short…

Making massage as part of your training plan and routine can help optimize performance, prevent injuries, and promote overall well being. Don´t forget to include proper training, strength training, good nutrition, and rest days.

We hope this information is useful for you. If you have any questions about our treatments, please contact us. You can find us in Mill Hill Broadway and Islington. If you like this blog, please share!

We are always happy to help.



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