Workout Wednesday – Fun with the Foam Roller

Workout Wednesday, Foam Roller, Stretch, Post Run, Recovery

It’s been a few days since the Pike’s Peak Ascent. Can you believe it’s over? I feel like I’ve been talking about it forever. I put a lot of emphasis on my goals, training, and of course, the race report– but just as important is what comes next. 

The week following any big race is tough. The decision to completely rest or to jump full force back into your routine is personal. I have generally found that my body does best when I get back into my routine. 

This week we jump feet first into the second half of Marine Corps Marathon training {training for the Pike’s Peak Ascent made up the first half of training}. In order to be ready to train hard again, I’ve been spending a lot of time with my foam roller

What Is Foam Rolling?

Foam rolling, also known by the fancy term self-myofascial release, is nothing other than a form of self-massage. It is used to release muscle tightness or trigger points. This method of self-massage applies pressure to specific points on your body to aid in muscle recovery.

Foam rolling uses a very dense foam and your own body weight to work out pain and tightness in your muscles.

Foam rolling can be uncomfortable or even painful to some. You can think of it like the discomfort that can come from stretching– it should not be unbearable, and you should feel so much better when you are done. I like to say it hurts so good 🙂

Why Should I Foam Roll?

Stretching alone isn’t always enough. The deep compression that comes from foam rolling releases trigger points and helps to enhance performance as you are assisting in breaking up muscle knots and resuming normal blood flow and function.

What Muscles Should I Roll?

That decision will be made by your body! What areas are tight? Where are you feeling a tad bit of pain? Those are the areas to start with. I have a lot of pain and tightness in my hips. If I have only a few minutes to spare, I always roll my IT Band.

Post Run Foam Roller Routine

Similar to stretching, it’s best to foam roll when your muscles are already warm {although any time you can fit in is better than no time}. Post run is the perfect time to get out the foam roller. I recommend focusing on the major muscles of the lower body– hips {for the IT Band}, quads, hamstrings, and calves.

To use the foam roller you place the part of your body that is tight on the roller, and use your body weight to massage the area. Massage / hold you position for at least 30 seconds– but feel free to go as long as you need on each muscle. 

You can adjust how much pressure you apply by how much of your body weight you allow to press on the area. Like I mentioned at the beginning– it will probably hurt. Remember to breath. I like to breath out when I’m rolling a particularly tight spot. 

Give this quick foam rolling routine a try after your next run!

Workout Wednesday, Foam Roller, Stretch, Post Run, Recovery

Workout Wednesday, Foam Roller, Stretch, Post Run, Recovery

Your turn! Do you have a regular date with the foam roller? What are your favorite muscles to roll? If you’re not in recovery mode like me, what are you doing to get sweaty today?

I am not a doctor or personal trainer {yet!}– just someone who loves fitness and wants to share my workouts with my lovely readers 🙂
This week I am linking up with The Fit Foodie Mama for #WildWorkoutWednesday, Jill for Fitness Friday, and Fitful Focus for Fit & Fashionable Friday. Stop by and check ’em out!

All photos were taken with GoPro Hero3+.

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