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Recovery Exercises For When You’re Tired And Everything Hurts

Move Two: Hip to Heel Press

a) Lie on the floor, bend your knees and put your feet flat on the floor, hip-width apart. Lift up your hips and

b) position the roller under your pelvis, just below the low back.

c) Place your left foot on the floor so your knee is in line with your left hip.

d) Extend your right leg straight up.

e) Straighten your leg so it’s perpendicular to the floor, as close to 90 degrees as possible with a straight leg.

f) Even if you are very flexible, don’t extend your leg beyond a 90-degree angle—you will lose the ability to lengthen the connective tissue on the back of your leg.

Flex and point your ankle 2–3 times. If you sense a tugging in the back of your calf, that’s what it feels like when you stretch a muscle. Keep your ankle flexed, so your toes pull toward your shin and your heel extends toward the ceiling. Slowly sink the back of your pelvis into the top of the roller. Take a focused breath as you feel the pulling sensation from your heel all the way down to your hip. Make sure your ribs are still heavy to the floor. If your ribs lift when you press your pelvis on top of the roller, you are creating too much movement. Take 2 more focused breaths while maintaining a flexed foot and a slightly tilted pelvis. Repeat on the other side. Notice how the muscular stretch when you flex and point is in an isolated area and the connective tissue length is a long line of pull on the back of your leg.

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Nicki Miller

Nicki Miller

Nicki Miller is the managing editor for Women's Running and spearheads our nutrition coverage. She’s an avid runner but also loves cycling (both on and off-road), yoga and all kinds of crazy videos to do at home. Formerly the editor of Martha’s Vineyard Magazine, Nicki started her journalism career at The Washington Post. Her first races were duathlons (run, bike, run) in her twenties with her husband, and then triathlons, completing the White Lake Half Ironman in North Carolina. Since joining Women’s Running in 2013, she’s been more focused on half marathons and trail running. Some of her proudest moments have been running the Boston Marathon (first 26.2), and becoming an RRCA certified running coach and helping others take up the sport.