At Myroo HQ we’re blessed to have the fabulous Yorkshire countryside right on our doorstep. When I can, I take the opportunity to go running. I don’t have a gym membership so my equivalent is some decent running shoes.
They offer a great service in my experience. Advice is always available and they check your running gait by recording a video of you on the treadmill. Meaning you get the shoes best suited to you and meaning I could retire my well worn old running shoes!
The benefits of exercise such as running
It's not headline news that exercising brings great benefits. Moderate or vigorous intensity exercise helps with mental health and well-being but also lowers the risk of certain diseases and as the NHS notes physical activity boosts self-esteem, mood, sleep quality and energy levels. Quite a list!
The thing I love the most about running is the zen like state you can enter, when you don’t actually realise you are running. My mind free wheels and I find it’s a great time to think over problems or issues. It's very often a source of solutions, inspiration and ideas.
My post-exercise recovery routine
For the past few months, after a run and shower, I’ve been testing out the new Myroo OM Oil (a post exercise massage oil) and it’s now part of my post exercise recovery routine along with stretching and using a foam roller.
The benefits of muscle tissue massage are well reported. Massage boosts mood and relaxation by releasing oxytocin, endorphin and serotonin. Post-workout self-massage also helps alleviate muscle soreness and reduce muscle inflammation.
Taking time to massage your muscles helps aid recovery and regeneration after intense exercise and helps improve performance over the longer term.
Self-massage also helps promote myofascial release. Fascia is the main connective tissue in the body. If you have tightness and pain it could be fascia restrictions.
Have you ever experienced that joy of waking up the day after vigourous exercise with no muscle soreness, only to be struck down the day after? You are not alone, it’s even got a name, DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). The good news is post exercise massage can really help soothe fatigued and tired tissues and also prevent the dreaded ache.
Using Myroo OM oil
Myroo OM Oil smells great, quite smokey and herbal. As well as Safflower and Rosehip oil it also contains Vetivert, Marjoram and May Chang. It can be used anytime but especially after exercise to massage into muscles and joints. Alternatively you can use a cap full in a warm bath to help relax tired muscles.
I use the Myroo OM Oil to give my feet a mini massage especially on the balls of my feet, heels and in between toes. I find it helps avoid cracking and hard skin formation and keeps the skin supple, ready for my next run.
In addition I use the oil to massage glutes, hamstrings, calves, neck and shoulders to help relax the muscles.
Finally I find a few drops of Myroo Skin Boost Serum on my face post shower feels great and my skin just drinks it up after exercise. The serum leaves it smooth and nourished.
How to use a foam roller
I also occasionally use a foam roller which helps extend the muscle fibres especially on the glutes. If you haven’t tried one before I recommend you give it a go. You can pick them up for a few pounds, or perhaps borrow one from a friend or at your local gym if you are a member.
Using a foam roller helps get rid of any tightness in the muscles. Releasing shortened soft tissue tight spots helps relieve pain, improves joint motion and muscle flexibility.
Using a foam roller as part of your warm down routine helps stretch the muscles out and helps prevent injury. It can be good for avoiding Iliotibial band (IT band) syndrome also known as “runners knee”.
Before I started using a foam roller I found I got a pain on the outside of my right knee after 10-15 minutes of running but having used the roller I have enjoyed pain free running for the last two years.
As you use the foam roller slowly on calves for example and you may come across areas that feel tight and painful. Hold the roller on that spot and use the weight of your legs to keep a constant pressure. It may feel painful but after around a minute you should feel the tissue start to release.
There's a great video from Runner’s World of the benefits of and how to use a foam roller here.
What’s your favourite exercise?
Doing any exercise is beneficial and everyone has their preference.
If you are new to running and fancy trying or need some motivation to make a start then check out the NHS Couch to 5K programme. There's loads of information, a week by week running guide and podcasts recorded by celebrity coaches Jo Whiley, Sarah Millican, Sanjeev Kohli or Michael Johnson.
Even if you can only get out once or twice a week you’ll soon find that the miles add up. There are plenty of free apps you can download to your phone to monitor your progress and stats if you like. I use Strava and a quick check today showed I’ve run a cumulative of 293km so far this year which makes me feel good.
I am happy to run in all weathers and running in the cold and wet can actually be quite exhilarating. I guarantee you will always feel better after a run, however short - go on get out there.
Phil (Mr Myroo)