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When I finish the race I usually go home, take a shower, have a bite and lie down to rest. It has worked fine for me all these years. I see some of my friends going to a massage parlors (no, not THAT kind of massage parlors!). They claim that they feel so much better and that it is worth the money spent. How good are massages?

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Massages are one way to speed recuperation since they relax tensed muscles and enable better blood flow to them. It speeds up the transport of the valuable nutrients and disposal of the waste material. Beside the biological value, it also feels fine. I suggest you try it few times and see for yourself. Of course, you can keep going without it, no doubt about that. However, if you want to indulge yourself you can visit a masseur and see for yourself if it is worth the money you pay or not?
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My vote is to give it a try. I would say they are worth the money...
Chrsitian has put it nicely.
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By now most people engaged in any serious regular fitness routine, whether running, lifting, crossfit, yoga...have hopefully read some of the great information on recovery and have some understanding of fascia, myofascial release, and triggerpoint release.

The myriad of massage techniques all have some benefits, besides feeling good, but the consensus seems to be that they are short-lived benefits. Adding a daily routine myofascial therapy will provide the real benefits. The tool most popular has been the $10-60 foam roller. In addition, some people implement the use of PVC pipes, "the stick" myo or tennis balls, or the newest addition a bag of special balls called the Shiatsubag.
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I was skeptical about whole massage thingy. But, once I've tried it I think it's the best method of relaxation.
Nothing can relax muscles so well like pressure on right spots.
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Everyone here had really good input as to why massages help to relax muscles and increase blood flow (healing muscle fibers). Another thing I'd like to add is that massage will force built-up lactic acid out of the muscle fibers. Lactic acid causes muscles to spasm and shorten, putting pressure on your joints and also causing you to lose strength.

A muscle needs to have its full length to give you power as it contracts. If it is already shortened by spasms, then you don't have your full strength.

Whether you decide to go to a good professional massage therapist, or you decide to self-treat (also very effective), getting your blood flowing through the muscles will only benefit you. One other thing, arnica is a fantastic homeopathic gel (also in tiny pills you put under your tongue) to heal bruised muscles, as well as treat swelling and pain.

Wishing you well,
Julie Donnelly
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I have had a massage therapist that I visit regularly for over 6 years. I can't even describe how much better I feel after one. All of my muscles respond better for the next week or so. for me it is very beneficial and worth the money. the real challenge is find a therapist that you are comfortable with, it is a very personal thing.
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