Twin Cities Marathon - How to recover from a marathon

I just ran a marathon and this seemed like an excellent time to talk about marathon recovery. 

Immediately after crossing the finish - calm down.  I always lay down and put my feet up on something.  Light post.  Tree.  Chair.  Anything will do.  The medics and EMTs usually come over to check on me but as long as I'm coherent they let me be.  Blood continues to rush back into places it hasn't been in five hours.  Awesome.

Just after the race: 
Eat - protein is good.  Also, the doctor says 'keep drinking until your pee is the color of lemonade' and it's totally cool to rehydrate with beer.  It'll put some calories back too.  I can never get that much food down after the race, but they had broth at the finish line and that was nice.
Feet - this may be my best marathon ever for my feet.  I have one blister that's so small and average it's almost disappointing.  I have all of my toenails.  Even more impressive - they're all the correct color.

The day of the race:
Stretch - No.  Seriously.  Do it again.  As soon as I can, I pay a visit to my local foam roller and spend some quality time with it.  Later on in the day I walk around the block (like 1/3 of a mile) and stop every so often to stretch my legs. 
Runner's cough - I totally get runner's cough (the kind caused by inhaling pollen and ten other kinds of crap) and cough up everything for a while after the race.  Usually if I'm sitting still I don't cough, and once my body is used to walking I don't cough.  As always, transitions are rough.  (I don't have exercise induced asthma and have no idea what the hell you do for that.  Sorry.)
Eat - More food!  Some people can down tons of food after the race.  I am not one of them.  My stomach is all ::Whoa:: What just happened? I had a plate of eggs and then my neighbor fed me some fish later. 
Fall asleep - by the time I had my regular parental phone call, I was pretty much done for the night, not sure if I was stringing words into sentences or not.

The next day - here's a good indicator of what to expectPersonally, I fell down when I tried to get out of bed because everything was so stiff.
Stretch - No.  Seriously.  Do it again.  I walk around the block and stretch every so often.  It's like I can feel the crap flowing out of my legs.  Finally.
Eat - I'm actually not super hungry right after the race and require some amount of coaxing to get good proteins down.  The day after the race I think I can eat everything.  This was true of my training and long runs as well.  I didn't really get a whole lot in the next day either.  My stomach, and the rest of my body are still in shock.

The next week - I'm going to try taking a whole week off, other than Wednesday's Team:Work run which should be a light recovery run. 
Also, Tuesday I did not fall down when I got out of bed.  Nice way to start the day!

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