Rest days, flexible training, and tricky winds
Throughout the course of any training program, many people will come to the point where their body is aching and they faced with a situation where they either have to deviate from their training schedule or power through the training as planned.
I’m a strong believer in listening to your body, but at the same time, you need to ensure that you’re sticking with your training program. It’s tough to decipher sometimes if you can power through how you’re feeling or if you should just forget what you had planned.
I’ve taken a different approach: assuming my schedule permits, I simply move around certain workouts. If my legs are beat, I’ll move up a swim workout and get in a gym session and move my ride or run back to give my legs another day off. You have to be careful here and make sure that you don’t do this too often, but if you’re consistently not feeling fresh, you may need to rework your schedule every once in a while to give your body more rest.
This morning my body told me to go back to bed. My mind, however, realized that I hadn’t ridden in three days and needed to get my ride in. So I made a compromise: I drove down to the beach to do a relatively flat ride along the coast instead of my normal, hilly loop.
Within five miles I was regretting my decision. I was struggling and my pace was a good 2 miles/hour under what I’m normally at. This didn’t bode well for me since the first half of my ride is typically about 2-3 miles an hour quicker than the second half because of the winds. I decided to cut my losses and my cut my ride short by about 8 miles. However, as soon as I turned around I noticed my speed had picked up immediately. I hadn’t realized that the wind I was feeling wasn’t simply a strong crosswind–the wind direction had actually changed directions from the normal southeast direction and was moving northeast.
Tricky, tricky winds. I still got a good ride in, but I’ll have to remember this for next time. I hadn’t experienced that wind shift before (winds in Southern California are very predictable).
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