Week 0: After the Los Angeles Marathon

Credits: Asics LA Marathon, 2014.
Most of us will wake up today with a vividly felt reminder of last night's running excursion from the Dodger Stadium all the way to Santa Monica. Maybe we have already checked our results as we certainly were asked about our times. While I did not finish with the time I had hoped for, some stats are worth mentioning: 
Minutes after the Marathon

Time: 4:05:44 (Goal Time: 3:35:59)
Overall Place: 2903 out of 21481 runners
Gender Place: 614 out of 9123 Females
Age Group Place: 122 out of 1314 Females in the F3034 Age 

So what's next? Normally it takes a minimum of two to three weeks for the body to recover from the stress of running 26.2 miles. The training we do in the three weeks following a marathon should be close to what we did the last three weeks before: in other words, an upward, or reverse I should say, taper. Our diet plans should include lean meats and dairy products, a diet high in protein helps to repair overused muscles. We should take off three days from running and not cross-train either in a mistaken belief that it will help us maintain fitness. We may be able to swim as we would be using somewhat different muscles, keeping it light. That means no butterfly strokes. Our bodies still need rest to allow for the muscles to recover. After three days, we may do an easy jog of 2-3 miles, if we feel like it. The best cross-training discipline for a recovering marathoner is simple walking. After a week we may be able to run 4-6 miles, keeping it to a jogging pace. Although our body may feel better again, it is still in recovery mode. That being said, let us put a new training goal on our coach calender: How about signing up for a half-marathon? 

What did we learn, what can we take away from our race experience? What will we do differently next time?  Over the next days, I will write more on my training, about what I learned from running my first marathon, and what I'd do differently next time. So stay tuned!