After running about 18 miles between Monday and Tuesday, I took yesterday off completely. I had some aches and soreness so I thought best to not stress any part of my body. This morning, I ran an easy 45 minute jog at a comfortable pace, getting in about 5-5.3 miles.
After loosening up in the first 10 minutes or so, the warmth of the blood flow and the fluid movement seemed to flush any more soreness I had out of my body and I felt good for the duration. As I increase my running, it will be important to tone it down sometimes to avoid overuse and stress related injuries.
As you increase your fitness and start to see results in feeling or time, it is important to be smart and allow your body to recover. Active recovery can include walking, cycling, yoga, and light swimming.
Passive recovery, rest, increased sleep, etc. is also important as well. Sometimes you just need to do nothing and let your muscles repair themselves.