Add Rest days to your training plan.

14 Nov

Take time for proper rest:

As endurance athlete’s something we often forget to add into our training plans is “rest”! This is a very key element to any good training plan and something we all need to take seriously.

Rest can mean many different things, there is complete rest as in no exercise and then there can be what I call active rest or active recovery. Both very important and both have to be implemented into training plans.

Complete rest: I think at least once every two weeks you need a full day of complete rest. Sleep in and relax that day don’t do anything hard and stress the body but just allow the body to recover. These “complete” rest days get to be very crucial during the “taper” period of training and I always think that two days prior to a race needs to be a day of complete rest.

Active rest/recovery: This should be mixed in every week during training. Active rest would mean you’re still active doing something so as a runner maybe you swim? Or go for a hike or walk. It’s activity that is low stress on the body keeps the heart rate very relaxed and aerobic and allows the body to heal some from the previous days hard efforts but also keeps the body lose and active by not fully resting and doing nothing.

As you train for your next events and you look over your training plan from coach and see “rest” or “Active recovery” in the plan follow that advice and know that those workouts are just as key as the hard effort workouts.

Enjoy some down during the off season as well and make sure you really give yourself a good 4 weeks a year at the end of the season to rest. Take extra days of complete rest and mix in more active recovery days. Run, swim, and cycle for fun during this time don’t stress the body with hard efforts but do more basic aerobic workouts to just maintain some endurance.

Happy Training!
Coach MB
USA Track and Field Level one certified coach

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One Response to “Add Rest days to your training plan.”

  1. Gema November 14, 2011 at 3:10 am #

    I just applied a less is more to my tapering strategy for a half marathon, and it paid off! I shaved off some incredible time. I now have a new PR and new rest strategy to incorporate in further training schedules.

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