I've heard of this whole ice bath as a recovery for years.  I had never personally taken ice baths, but heard from many that it hurt, but was worth the recovery.  I recently stumbled across cryotherapy.  Whole Body Cryotherapy is the exposure of the human body to extreme cold that is applied inside a cryosauna.  It is performed in response to injury, long-term conditioning of the heal of the boy, and it is also used for positive aesthetic effects it has on the skin.*

Icehouse Cryotherapy sent a message to me through one of my Facebook groups.  They were interested in getting our group out to try the therapy.  I was skeptical at first.  Why would I want to purposely go into a chamber of ice?  What was all the hype about?  Wasn't this cryo-thing expensive?

We settled on a date to go and check it out.  The location is in a warehouse area in Kirkland.  I thought we were lost at first.  When walking in, the first thing you see is tennis courts.  Bite-size tennis courts to be exact.  There is a door that says Icehouse Cryotherapy, so I assumed we were in the right place.

It turns out that the owners took over an ex-crossfit box and were avid tennis players.  They taught at a recreational and professional level.  They traveled far to get cryotherapy for themselves and thought it would be a good idea to incorporate the cryotherapy into the tennis/gym area.

The intake was easy.  We were given fresh comfy socks, a robe, gloves, shoes, and a wipe to remove any excess moisture.  No jewelry was allowed (unless it could hide under the gloves).

I was up first!  I was still sore from the Husky 10k Race I had done on Sunday.  But I knew there would be little to no movement in the chamber.  I stepped into the chamber after it "warmed" up.  The chamber had hydraulics and lifted me high enough so that my head stuck out.  I then gave them my robe.  It felt cold.  It felt as cold as going outside on a snowy day without clothes (just underwear) would feel like.  At least that's the best way I can describe it.  The attendant told me to move around that that would help.  He also indicated that putting my arms up would help warm me up.  45 seconds done.  I could do this.  Then it got colder.  Ok, now I was moving in the chamber at a marching pace with my hands above my head.  Breathing slowly in and out.  15 seconds to go!  This is where my thighs started feeling numb.  I knew I couldn't go more than the minimum two minutes.  Done.  Even after the machine stopped, I couldn't put the robe on fast enough.  I was directed to a stationary bike to help bring my temperature up.  There was also a heater next to the bike.  Slowly, I started to recover from the numbness feeling.  Afterwards, I started to dress and watch Arnie take a turn.  Then I realized, I was no longer sore.  That was pretty neat.

Arnie thought he could do more than the minimum two minutes.  Over-achiever.  But he only lasted the two minutes.  He said that he did feel a burst of energy at the end.  But he was cold.

On the way home, I noticed my thighs were cold.  That was probably where I felt the most sore from my race.  Which makes sense - that 's where the therapy affected me.

I'm hoping to go back again in preparation for another event.  Since it's good for recovery and performance, I'll have to choose whether I want to feel good before or after?  Now that's a tough choice!

If you haven't tried cryotherapy before, I recommend at least trying it for yourself.  No words can truly describe how cold it is or how it will affect you.

Use the code:  run2befit and get 20% off packages and single sessions (except monthly memberships).  Will also set up a group event to get an even better rate!  Stay tuned.


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