Recovery is king
Often when I talk with runners they are obsessed with either mileage, or pace, or both. And to a great extent I blame Strava!
The obsession with sharing everything we do online, comparing ourselves against others and competing for segments and badges takes us away from focusing on us, and what we need to be getting out of each of our run sessions.
And the recovery element of our training is the bit that gets hit most of all.
The urge to run today, just in case people think I'm slacking off. The need to run fast in the recovery periods between intervals in a speed session so our average pace doesn't dip too low and people think we're 'de-training'. Or going out hard on a recovery run as people might think we're feeling weak
I'm sure we've all been guilty of each of these at one point or another,
But recovery is an essential part of training, not time off away from it.
Without recovery after intense run sessions our body can't adapt and reap the benefits of that session. Without recovery between efforts in a speed session our bodies won't be ready to go hard again so we won't get the maximum benefit from the session And without recovery periods after races our bodies can't repair and we just set ourselves up for injury and frustration.
So treat recovery as just as an important part of your training plan as anything else.
To help you here are four quick tips to make recovery the king of your training routine:
Treat the day after each hard session (speed, tempo or endurance) as a recovery day - either take it off completely , cross-train or go for a VERY easy run
Recovery pace for these VERY easy run's should be at least a minute per mile slower than your tempo speed - not just marginally slower
If you currently jog fast between your speed intervals, jog slower. If you currently jog slowly, try walking. The aim here is to lower your HR back down to it's recovery level, so use a HR monitor or learn to go by feel (not time or distance)
Race day planning doesn't finish the day before you're event - make sure you think about how you're going to recover in the days and weeks after it's all done to ensure your body bounces ready for the next training block... after a little celebrating of course!
So treat the word recovery with the respect it deserves and put it at the heart of your training to ensure a long and healthy running life.
Recovery is a key element of our training philosophy at Blaze Your Trail and a fundamental element of both our plans and our coaching - get in touch to find out more about how better recovery could benefit your running.