A Guide for Denver Runners: Enhance Your Running Recovery with Hot and Cold Therapy

As a runner in Denver’s vibrant community, you’re no stranger to the challenges of training and recovery in the Mile High City’s unique climate. From tackling steep inclines to navigating unpredictable weather, your body undergoes significant stress during each run. That’s why incorporating hot and cold therapy into your post-run routine can be a game-changer for enhancing muscle recovery and overall performance.

Add Ice + GLOW to your Routine

At ‘Ohana Yoga + Barre, we understand the importance of providing Denver runners with effective tools to support their training journey. That’s why we offer a state-of-the-art Morozko Pro Ice Bath, featuring sub-40 degree temperatures, and the Sunlighten mPulse full-spectrum infrared sauna. During your 45-minute semi-private appointment, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the rejuvenating benefits of contrast therapy in whichever way best suits your needs.

Hot + Cold Therapy for Runners

So, how exactly can alternating hot and cold therapy benefit Denver runners? Let’s dive into the science behind these ancient healing modalities.

Cold therapy, such as immersing yourself in an ice bath, is known for its ability to reduce inflammation and muscle soreness post-exercise. By constricting blood vessels and decreasing metabolic activity, ice baths help to flush out waste products and decrease swelling, promoting faster recovery between runs. This can be especially beneficial for Denver runners who frequently encounter challenging terrains and high-intensity workouts.

On the other hand, hot therapy, like relaxing in an infrared sauna, offers its own set of advantages for muscle recovery. The heat from the sauna helps to increase blood flow, relax muscles, and alleviate tension, leading to improved flexibility and mobility. Additionally, the infrared light penetrates deep into tissues, promoting detoxification and boosting the body’s natural healing processes.

How Often Should You Use Hot + Cold Therapy?

When it comes to incorporating hot and cold therapy into your routine, consistency is key. Aim to utilize these modalities 2-3 times per week, ideally on your rest days or after particularly strenuous workouts. By making hot and cold therapy a regular part of your recovery regimen, you’ll optimize your body’s ability to bounce back from runs and minimize the risk of injury.

In a Runners Connect articles they mention “After a marathon, for example, going out for a 20-30min jog is probably the last thing you want to do. Setting up a contrast bath station could be an attractive way to flush out waste after a tough race.” Scheduling an Ice + GLOW session after a race could just be what your body is craving to help you recover more efficiently.

Support Your Mental Health

In addition to their physical benefits, hot and cold therapy also offer valuable mental and emotional support for Denver runners. The quiet solitude of the sauna or the invigorating shock of the ice bath can serve as opportunities for mindfulness and reflection, helping you to recharge both your body and mind for the miles ahead.

Surfer Sophie Hellyer mentions about her Ice Bath practice, “What I love about cold water therapy is that it’s like hitting a big reset button,’ she says. ‘Whatever mood I’m in, it completely refreshes me. While you’re in cold water, you can’t think about anything else other than breathing and the sensations of the water, so whatever it is that’s going on in life – stresses, injuries or whatever’s on your mind – at that moment you’re just thinking about breathing, the sensations of your body and nothing else. Afterwards, you feel refreshed – it’s an empowering feeling. I’m pretty much addicted.”

Hot + Cold Therapy for Denver Runners

Hot and cold therapy can be powerful tools for enhancing muscle recovery and supporting overall well-being for Denver runners. Whether you’re tackling mountain trails or pounding the pavement in the city, incorporating these ancient healing modalities into your routine can help you stay strong, resilient, and ready to conquer any challenge that comes your way.