The benefits of Epsom salt baths for runners

Bath time!

Bath time!

After my running failure on Sunday, I decided to take my marathon recovery more seriously. To start, I booked a long, intensive massage on Monday night. This massage was two hours long and it focused mainly on running muscles. Have you ever had a two hour massage? It’s pretty luxurious! You go into some sort of relaxation coma. It’s pretty spectacular. I highly recommend it – but free up your entire evening. This massage started at 7:30 and I didn’t get home till almost 10!

I decided not to run all week. It’s been hard, but I know it’s for the best.

In addition to the intense massage and no running, I have also been trying to soak in regular Epsom salt baths. Epsom salt has all kinds of benefits, especially for runners.

Epsom salt is full of magnesium, an important element in the human body. In fact, it is the second most abundant element in the human body, and apparently most people are deficient. Soaking in a bath with Epsom salt is one of the easiest ways to get a boost as the magnesium is easily absorbed through the skin.

The magnesium in Epsom salt has a variety of benefits, but one important one for runners is relieving joint pain. It helps reduce inflammation and relieves muscle pain and cramps. Just add two cups of the salt to a warm bath, soak for 15 minutes and voila!

In addition to relieving muscle pain, Epsom salt also helps with:

  • Heart and circulatory health
  • Flushing toxins from the body
  • Improving nerve function
  • Relieving stress
  • Improving the absorption of nutrients
  • Improving the formation of joint proteins, and
  • Relieving headaches and migraines.

Yup. All this from a bath. Who knew?!

You can buy giant bags of Epsom salt in most pharmacies and its super cheap.  About $9 for a 2KG bag. You can also get a variety of scents. I chose lavender – it smells nice and helps you sleep. Not that I need help sleeping. I’m a pro at napping, and bed time is my favourite time of day.

After all this relaxation, I’m looking forward to a much more successful run this weekend.


  1. Graham November 7, 2013 / 11:16 pm

    I can attest to your elite napping abilities.

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