Friday Thrive

Happy Friday! This week’s Friday Thrive is the recovery edition, probably because this week for me has been focused on post-race recovery. I don’t know why, but for some reason I was sorer after this 10K than I was after my last half marathon PR! 

This is my favorite photo from race day, because it captures exactly how I felt. 10K races hurt!

Friday Thrive

Run 

I need nature on my runs. Granted, an absolutely spoiling aspect of living in the East Seattle area is that I can access multiple paved trails within the range of just walking out my doorstep to a 15 minute drive, and then just a bit further for actual hilly dirt trails. I don’t have to go far to run in quiet communion with nature. The more green I see on a run, the better. 

Friday Thrive

And also the more blue, the better! Finally, rainy season is over and the beautiful blue skies of Seattle summers have arrived. 

Recover

In my latest article for Runkeeper, 3 Tips to Up Your Recovery Game,” I talk about just how nutrition can play a role in recovering after a run. 

How much attention to do pay to what you eat after a run? Post-run nutrition is vital to properly recovering after a hard workout or long run and both the timing of the food (30-60 minutes post-run) and what you eat can improve recovery. But you don’t have to reach for that beet-turmeric smoothie in order to optimize recovery. Research indicates that blueberries and tart cherry juice provide enough anti-inflammatory compounds to reduce oxidative stress and improve muscle recovery. 

Friday Thrive

Read

Collagen Supplements Aren’t Doing You Any Good” from Outside. 

Some of my athletes have asked me about collagen supplements and my answer is to always not waste their money on them. This article affirms my philosophy on supplements such as collagen: they simply don’t work because of how your body breaks down protein. Your body doesn’t automatically transport the whole collagen structure from the supplement straight to the injured tendon or ligament. Collagen, like any protein, is broken down into individual amino acids upon digestion. And even if the collagen wasn’t broken up during digestion, the process of rebuilding collagen in your muscles is much more complex than pasting in collagen molecules. 

You’re far better off prioritizing complete proteins within the 60-minute window after a workout, eating a nutrient-dense diet, and following standard recovery protocols of icing, appropriate stretching, and foam rolling. 

Eat

After the Snohomish Women’s Run, we went out for Greek food. I probably ate at least two or three servings worth of pita, but this was a delicious post-race meal. We got hummus and other dips, stuffed grape leaves, falafel, and split a gyro – so delicious! But Greek/Mediterranean food only makes me crave it more, so this week I’ve made this crispy baked falafel recipe from Cookie and Kate and this chicken shawarma recipe from NYT Cooking (served over rice with lots of roasted vegetables and a tahini-lemon sauce). 

Friday Thrive

Rest

Ollie’s mileage is increasing (this week will be 25 miles for him) and consequently, he’s become calmer. Maybe it’s the fact that he’s almost 2 years old now as well, but regular runs burn off his crazy energy. All he wants to do during the day, minus a few bouts of playing with Charlie, is rest on the sofa. He’s even become more snuggly in the evenings, although I’m not quite equipped to manage a 50 lb lap dog. 

Friday Thrive

Have you tried collagen supplements? Do you think they work?
Pita and hummus or chips and salsa?
What are your plans this weekend?

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19 Responses

  1. I would usually choose pita and hummus over chips and salsa! I’ve been using collagen protein for a few weeks now. I really like it as a protein power to use in smoothies or to make gelatin, but who knows if it actually helps with injury. In general I try to limit supplements like that but its something Im using in addition to my other regular meals with real foods. I think my nails have gotten a little stronger so I guess thats a bonus at least!

  2. Love that you have access to so many miles of gorgeous trails!! And yes, 10K hurt so much. The effort is so much greater, although obviously a shorter distance but ouch. Love the greek food too! We get it where we can around here which is to say, we don’t eat it very much 🙂
    Love the picture of Ollie and Star is now up to 2 mile walks a day and it definitely helps curb her never ending energy!!
    Happy weekend my friend…

    1. We’re spoiled by the trails! The one in the photo is along a boardwalk through wetlands…it’s feels so removed. Yay for Star being up to 2 mile walks! Just wait until you can run her 🙂 Happy weekend!

  3. I’m so glad you gave out solid advice on the collagen supplements! I’ve been seeing them everywhere lately and I was so curious about them. The one thing that I can appreciate about them (from what I’ve heard) is that the protein powder can be dissolved in anything and it has zero texture and taste. I have yet to find a protein powder that I can tolerate. I have Vega, but it tastes HORRIBLE. I used to use some stuff from GNC which is a supplement store (chain) used mostly by body builders and I’m not exactly sure how many chemicals are in that stuff. I’m staying away from it during pregnancy. Do you have any suggestions for protein powder that you think I’d like? I have such a hard time getting protein in and the baby needs it!

    1. Thank you! That is a good point, that they are a tolerable/dissolvable protein powder. I use Bob’s Red Mill (pea protein + chia seeds) and Cabot protein powder, which is pure whey and no weird stuff. I refuse to use soy at all with my hormone issues so I need clean protein powder!

  4. Your Greek food looks amazing. It’s been forever since I’ve had Greek food. We have Greek festival here but it costs just to get in and I’m like… no thanks.

    I do take a collagen supplement. It’s from Hammer Nutrition and it is really a “Recovery” supplement. It has a lot of different things in it like glucosamine, collagen, some vitamins and minerals. Is it working? Well, when I was injured I didn’t take as much ibuprofen when I started taking it. Maybe I’m paying $30 for a 3-month supply of expensive pee, I don’t know. I will say, I DO NOT believe all the testimonials on supplement websites about people taking that said supplement when injured and running an ultra a week later or whatever.

    And honestly, supplements are just that- *supplements*. I feel like you get 90% of the way there with training, recovery, eating healthy foods in general, etc. Often people will focus on the little things before they really look at the big picture because it’s a heck of a lot easier to take a pill than to focus on foam rolling more nights than not, or to make absolutely sure you get some food within 30-60 min. post workout, etc.

    1. There’s a difference between a vitamin/mineral supplement with collagen and taking JUST collagen in hopes that it will cure an injury. It’s not the collagen itself that’s an issue, it’s relying on it to heal an injury or build crazy endurance. And it is easier to take a pill….but easier isn’t always better!

      1. The pill I take is Hammer Tissue Rejuvenator. I like it and have had several friends recommend it, but if you look on the website for Hammer, you do see some crazy testimonials (I didn’t 100% trust those, although the Amazon reviews were pretty glowing, so I went for it and bought). I’m not sure why anyone would simply trust a supplement when injured or trying to improve. Clay and I both take this but we are also working hard each day and focusing on other aspects of recovery, like R8/foam rolling, getting enough sleep, nutrition, rest days, yoga, etc. No one thing ever takes care of an injury- healing is a gradual process with so many elements, and if you don’t address root causes in the muscles/joints/form/etc… anything else is like slapping a band aid on it and it will eventually plague you again or cause a different injury.

  5. 10Ks do hurt! I think we talked about this once…how it’s not that much slower than a 5K but you’re running twice as long! They are so satisfying though. They’re long enough that you feel like you got in a good, endurance run, but they’re over in an hour!

    I’d choose pita/hummus when I need something more filling, but I choose chips and salsa when I want something super tasty. It is my favorite snack. SO delicious! Happy weekend.

  6. I’ve been adding collagen hydrosylate to my morning breakfast yogurt bowl for months. I can’t say that it’s doing anything for injury recovery but it’s made my nails so strong and they grow very fast. I love Ollie’s ears. So cute!

    1. It’s the best step to take to refuel after a run! If I know I won’t be home, I will have a snack to make sure some calories hit my bloodstream in time.

  7. Ollie and Ridley need to play and wear each other out. They would have so much fun. I have been fueling for recovery all weekend… without the need to recover 😀 Happy Weekend! Also, you need to visit this area and basically move in.

  8. Honestly… If I had pita and hummus AND chips and salsa, I would probably make a whole meal out of that.

    I have driven ~1,500 miles this weekend. Currently trying to remember why I didn’t fly…

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