I'm a firm believer in an active recovery.
Rather than letting your mind convince you to take lots of time off, we should get back on our feet as soon as is comfortable without risking injury. That is why last Wednesday, three days after my first marathon, I was running again.
All day Monday and some of Tuesday I was stiff and sore in the legs, glutes in particular. Then Tuesday evening I was lined up to help coach the Little Athletics, which my son is in. I hate disappointing them, so I went along. It was our first outside training session for the kids this year and I found myself doing some light jogging around getting things set up. It was tough at first, but then my legs started to loosen up. I didn't go to the adult track session - no point!
On Wednesday morning I was back in the gym with the aim of doing light cross training involving exercises that would get the legs moving, but nothing that would make them have to actually work. That went well so I did a slow 3km run on the treadmill and felt fine! For the rest of the day my legs felt good and I was "itching" to go for another run, but I didn't. Thursday evening I was still feeling good, so I went out for a run around the village and covered about 7.5k with an average pace of 5:15min/k, happy enough. I went back to the gym on Friday morning and did the same as Wednesday and felt pretty good still. This time I did the run in my VFFs at a slightly faster pace than I would normally do in them.
Saturday I felt good but took a rest day. Sunday I drove to Pheonix Park and did a 21.3k run (just over a half marathon) in lovely 16C sunny weather. My max HR was 151bpm, average of 145 and total time was 2:02. Pretty slow and relaxed, which was my aim. Still feeling good though!