Easy Days and Overtraining
"There is a very basic rule of training: Stress + Rest = Adaptation." -Keith Livingstone (from Healthy Intelligent Training)
This is the guiding principle of the Lydiard Training Method. Stress without rest usually leads to illness, injury and poor performance. As you are setting up your training schedule the first thing you need to plan are your easy days. This can be a jog, an aerobic run or simply a day off. This day allows your body to adapt to the previous hard work out or stress.
Its easy to get caught up in hard training. You feel like you are accomplishing something. But beware you aren’t unless you are allowing your body to rest and recover. Have you ever had that experience where you look at your watch after a period of running and think “Holy smokes, you know how fast we have been running?”.
This happened to me. I was running with a friend in Ann Arbor, we decided to do 10 miles along the Huron River. It’s an awesome run and pretty flat. We ended up running 52:47, 5:16 pace. At the end of a 91-mile week with 3 other high stress workouts. Needless to say, the following week I struggled and was tired which cost me a couple of other hard runs I was supposed to do. I was lucky I didn’t get hurt. I learned from that and adjusted to ensure I built in proper recovery in order to adapt to the training stress and gain fitness.
When planning your easy day be sure its much shorter in duration and intensity. A long run even at a slower pace is not an easy day. A short slow run of 20-40 minutes will work or simply a day off.
Please stop in the store to learn more about the Lydiard Method. We are trained Lydiard coaches and can help you sign up. While your personalized plan costs $100, and goes to a non-profit, we provide the day to day coaching at no additional charge.