Archive for June, 2010

Mid Season Break

June 9, 2010

Believe it or not, half the year has already passed. With it several races and events have come and gone. You have been going at it since december or so. There is still half a season left and it is time for a break.

Lots of people know they should take a break, but they don’t. It is time to really learn to give yourself some mid season rest and relaxation. This means for most athletes a few days to a full 2 weeks or so off. The proper amount of time off depends heavily upon the amount of time you have been training and your remaining season goals.

There has been lots of scientific research but I will summarize some of the benefits of taking a break. One, it gives the time for muscles to rebuild themselves after intense use or hard racing. The muscles have time to flush out waste and for them to fully recharge with glycogen, enzymes, and proteins. Not only does this mean static sitting around however;This includes some active recovery work. During the time off it includes self massage or a professional message, stretching and eating a proper and healthy diet. Two, rest gives the time to allow for some healing in the bone and connective tissues. Overuse is a very real danger in cycling, running, or swimming. In cycling the pedaling motion occurs 5,000 or 6,000 times per hour. Recovering again not only relies on rest, but stretching and eating well to aid in recovery . There are several other peripheral physical benefits, but the most key I feel is psychological.

Taking the time off allows you to regain time and focus on what you have done and what is yet to come. Time off from the bike gives a healthy break to the daily grind of the training routine. While the human being thrives on consistency of day to day life it is healthy to just change your routine every now and a again. Think of it even as a vacation like the ones you take from work. Many cyclists think If I am off the bike I am loosing fitness. Research has shown it takes 14 days off complete inactivity to loose even 1-3% of fitness. This time off is a great time to rethink about your current goals and the rest of the season. Instead of training time, it is wise to take time to research races, retune your training plan or just spend time with family and friends. This mental time off is more valuable to racers or the enthusiasts than the physical benefits.

After this time off, a week or two of reverting to simple Long steady Zone 2 rides is ideal to help the body get back into the the swing of training and developing a daily regimen once again. There will be one key difference. 2 workouts per week will still be a very short very intense efforts to help maintain upper end fitness. The other 4 to 5 days will be long and slow endurance to tempo rides.

Ride Hard

Coach Jordan

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