I received this product for review, but was not paid for my review. All opinions are my own. Thank you for helping to support Running Wife!
Today I want to focus on a very important topic – recovery.
After a marathon (or any race) it’s important to make sure you are allowing your body to recover properly. Don’t make my mistake after I ran the Kiawah Marathon in 2014. I was so pumped that I jumped right back into training without giving my body time to do what it needed to do – recover.
You hear others talking about recovery all the time, but from firsthand experience I can tell you if you skip this part of running then it usually does not end well. Not only can it lead to burn out but even worse injury! I’ve dealt with both from my mistakes. We live and we learn but it is a very important lesson I definitely came to the hard way.
After my husband ran Chicago last weekend, our focus turned from marathon training to helping his body recover over the next several weeks. He works a bit different than most people as he runs the very next day. It’s very slow and short for him, but he finds that a bit more effective at this level. Me on the other hand I have to take an entire week or two off to make sure I’m fully recovered. Everyone is different but the same major point is there.
We’ve used many different tools over the years to try and speed up recovery. A few of my husband and I’s favorites: cold baths, foam roller, glutamine, supplements, compression, and massage. They all have their own purpose and have worked in their own way.
Recently, we received a new addition (and a really good one at that) to our recovery collection – the Air Relax Recovery System. I’ve used it a few times but since I’m pregnant I don’t as often; however, over the past months and post-marathon my husband has gotten an incredible amount of use out of it.
What is the Air Relax Recovery System?
Here’s a little background information on the Air Relax.
The Air Relax Recovery System is an air compression device which uses multiple chambers to compress in succession. The massaging helps to increase blood flow throughout the muscles in your legs and feet. Of course, increased blood flow means that it aid in recovery, just like a massage or other compression type item.
There are three different “modes” that control the type of pressure and way the pressure is applied. Type “A” inflates the chambers from the bottom up, one at a time (this is my person favorite). “B” inflates the chambers from the bottom up, but maintains the pressure in the lower chambers as it makes its way up. Finally, mode “C” maintains pressure in all the chambers at once and then releases.
There are also 4 different pressure levels which range from 0-230 mmHG. These can be adjusted during operation until you obtain the type of pressure you are comfortable with.
What are my thoughts on the AirRelax?
At first it intimidated me mostly because when it is putting the pressure on your legs it is almost like you have a blood pressure cuff on. It is odd at first, but once you relax and let it run through its 15 minute session it really does feel like a nice massage for your legs and feet.
This was one of the first pictures my husband sent me after we received the product in the mail.
My husband used this for several weeks leading up to Chicago and even brought it along with us to Chicago to use post-race.
Here are a few of his thoughts on Air Relax:
- The system is extremely portable and makes it easy for travel, especially for racing. We were able to pack it up in its original packaging and take it easily to the hotel. It took 1-2 minutes to unpack and get set up to use after the race was over.
- When he first received the product and hadn’t heard of the brand before he wasn’t sure what to expect when it comes to quality. The system is extremely high quality and durable.
- The different compression options were a big selling point. The variety of options allow you to focus on certain areas and target problem zones when you need to. After the Chicago Marathon his favorite mode was “A” because it covered all the parts of his legs (feet, calves, and quads).
- He has often had problems in the past with compression boots because they are too big or they come up too high. These fit perfectly. They have worked for my husband, myself, and my mother and father-in-law who tried them out while we were in Chicago.
- After using it the post-race in Chicago he has had one of the best recoveries from a marathon. Aside from a little IT band tightness his legs did not feel beat up or destroyed as they have in the past after marathons. This factor alone convinced him this is a product that will be coming with us on all future races.
If you are looking for a new addition to your recovery routine, the Air Relax Recovery System might just be it! You can find out more information about Air Relax on their website and follow them on Facebook.