Head for the pills?
After a hard run, it’s OK to experience muscle tenderness, soreness and even temporary muscle swelling. Under most circumstances, experts recommend letting this natural process run its course without interference. ‘Taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) can blunt training adaptations,’ says sports medicine specialist Dr Rob Nied. But there are some exceptions to the rule:
> You ran your goal race and are very sore. Take an ice bath and an anti-inflammatory tablet if you want to. Doing so at this point won't disrupt your training gains (training’s done... for now, anyway).
> You twisted your ankle and have visible redness and swelling or severe soreness. Apply ice and consider taking an NSAID for two or three days to treat an acute injury.
> Your plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendinosis is flaring up again. For a chronic overuse injury, you may need to take antiinflammatories for seven to 10 days. If you’re still in pain after that, make an appointment to see a physiotherapist.