Whether you are self-coached or on a training plan, it is important to time to back off once in a while. Your body and mind will thank you.
I just finished a recovery week, and to be honest, I forgot about the emotional rollercoaster that goes along with a recovery week.
At the beginning of the week, I noticed I was tired. I hadn’t officially planned a recovery week, but when I looked back on my training, I realized that I had been pretty consistent for the last four weeks. And I had just put in two rather long trail runs, which probably put me over the edge.
Once I committed to taking it easy for the rest of the week, an amazing thing happened. I got really tired and really hungry. It was as if my body acknowledged it was OK to not be “on” every day for a training session. It was as if my body understood that it needed nutrients in food to re-build. I did easy, shorter workouts. And these didn’t feel great. Just check my Strava comments. I was slow. And I was tired.
This was another lesson, or rather another thing I remembered, about training. When the body is allowed to recover, it may not feel great. I take this as a sign that my energies are being used to repair and rebuild,. So instead of stressing about how tired I felt and worrying that I didn’t have the energy to perform well, I enjoyed the fact that my body responded by putting its energies towards making me stronger.
After all, that’s what training is all about, right? We stress the body in order for it to repair and be able to handle that stress more efficiently in the future. Repeat over and over.