Nine cans of varying booze sank, 25,000 steps a day charging from tent to stage, a diet of pizza and nuggets, and lots of throwing yourself about to music.
Standing on your feet for days on end with only a broken camping chair to periodically fall back on, it’s no wonder festivals physically take it out of people – and why recovery afterwards is so important.
With festival season getting well underway – and Glastonbury just around the corner – we asked experts how to bounce back quickly.
Kate Booker, nutritionist at Nutrition Geeks, says to eat colourful fruit and vegetables that are rich with antioxidants.
‘These support the liver and the immune system. You could blend a smoothie with antioxidant rich berries and collagen for muscle repair,’ she says.
‘Include lots of colourful vegetables that can be beneficial for liver health, like asparagus, aubergine, avocado, beetroot, butternut squash, carrots, celery, courgettes, fennel, olives, red cabbage, peas, red pepper, rhubarb sweet potatoes and tomatoes.’
Glutathione is your body’s natural antioxidant, and Kate says you can also include glutathione rich, or glutathione increasing foods, such as avocado, asparagus, walnuts, milk thistle, cumin and turmeric too.
‘Our livers work hard detoxing so it can be helpful to give it some extra support from time to time,’ she adds.
‘Another key elements is turmeric which reduces inflammation – it’s an antioxidant and may help to protect us from fighting off an infection.
‘You could cook a curry or take turmeric as a supplement for this, and add black pepper which helps your body absorb the beneficial compounds in the turmeric.’
Fruit and veg
Shona Wilkinson, lead nutritionist at DR.VEGAN, says kiwis are the way to go.
She says: ‘They contain a type of fibre which is completely unique to them, which provides a food source for the probiotics within your gut and encourages the production of short-chain fatty acids.
‘These nourish the gut and control inflammation levels throughout the entire body, particularly on your skin.
‘Kiwis encourage proper bowel function, which is important for removing toxins from your body.’
She also recommends onions and garlic, eaten raw, which contain sulphur, helping with liver detoxification.
‘You might feel slightly more bloated than usual,’ Shona says.
‘To calm this down, try saying no to your usual morning coffee for a little while.
‘Caffeine stimulates the secretion of gastric acid, leaving you feeling a little uncomfortable. Instead, starting your day with a fruit smoothie or herbal tea will give you the best chance of reducing that bloat and getting back on track.’
Zach Kingsbury, PT and assistant gym manager at PureGym Cambridge says really focusing on recovering is important – this won’t be your usual week at the gym.
He says: ‘Many of the fluids taken during a festival aren’t pure water, whether it’s alcohol or sugary drinks – your liver won’t be too thankful!
‘For the next two to three days, ensure that you’re taking on at least two litres of pure, fresh water to help flush out any toxins and get your body back working efficiently.’
If your legs are aching from lots of dancing and moving around, a good stretch will help to loosen up the muscles and relieve the tension.
‘Try to do at least two stretches each for the hamstrings, glutes, quadriceps and calves in one session. Remember, it should feel relaxing – not taxing,’ he adds.
Short walks and yoga can be helpful too, improving circulation and speeding up recovery, Hannah Kerridge from PureGym Colchester adds.
She says hot and cold therapy can work too.
‘Having a warm shower and then applying ice packs to affected areas (where you are most sore) can be beneficial.
‘Don’t put too much pressure to get straight back into your normal routine the next day.
‘Don’t push yourself too hard too soon and pay attention to any signs of injury or excessive fatigue and adjust your activities accordingly.’
Finally, remember to get an early night – it’s vital you get back on track with your sleep schedule.
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