Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Different Approaches to Recovery

After taking yesterday off, I'm just now back from a short test run on the 'new' foot. It felt great - no dings, no wincing. Whew!

I did feel generally tired and stiff, like some more recovery is required. Derrick and I have different approaches to our recovery weeks. He likes to do more of a blend between recovery and training, opting to drop his mileage by about 20 percent and lessen any workouts in either intensity or duration. He says this still gives him a bit of training effect, while being able to recover enough to ramp things up again the next week.

I understand the logic of this, but I find myself taking a more drastic recovery approach. I figure I can't recover and train at the same time because I see them as mutually exclusive. If I'm training it means I'm breaking myself down by pushing the limits of what my body can handle - by increasing mileage, doing more or faster workouts, less rest sprinkled in, etc. When it's time to recover, I feel that the more aggressive I am with it (i.e. the less I do), the more all that hard training will get absorbed, and the fresher I'll feel to train hard again. So with my approach, the harder the training block, the more significantly I'll tend to cut back.

I'm sure both approaches are fine - I can sell myself on their merits anyway - but for me a big plus from my way is that I enjoy the mental break I get (I don't think Derrick needs this as much). I also feel like it probably helps protect me from getting injured.

Thoughts, theories?

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