Pushing the Envelope

There comes a time in training where you just have to back off. But its not always easy to see it if you’re the one in the middle of the training. There’s always the feeling I need to push through it or gut it out. Always pushing isn’t good. The human body just can’t take it. I’ve done several TTT blogs on the importance of recovery runs so I won’t be repetitive here about the training benefits.

Sometimes a real-world example can be helpful. Here are two weeks from my old training log. For some reason I got the bright idea that pushing the envelope and inserting a 30-mile-long aerobic run into my training regime was a good idea (there is no evidence that supports this). In the first picture you can see a 30 miler on July 26 in 3 hours 38 minutes/7:15 a mile. The effects of this effort didn’t come out till the following week. Entered a 10k on August 2 and dropped out at 2 miles! Then on August 5 the effect came out: had to cut a workout short and started experiencing left knee pain. I missed some training time so in the end I paid the price as my body had to recover.

So, I violated Lydiard’s first rule of long aerobic runs: don’t go over 3 hours. I should have known, I read his book and it was clear. I thought I knew better! Boy did I pay the price. The other lesson that came out of this was that more is not better, in fact it usually is worse. So, in the end, respect your training, listen to your body and be smart about your training. There is a fine line between pushing the envelope and incurring injury, I crossed the line and paid the price with missed training time.

Here at Running Niche we are trained Lydiard level I & II coaches. Please stop in the store to learn more about the Lydiard Method. We 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.

Bob Dyer (Co-owner, Running Niche)
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