Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Thinking about Recovery in Triathlon and Sport

I've been thinking about recovery a lot lately. It seems that in our culture, recovery is something to be earned through really hard work. Fair enough. The downside to this line of thinking, however, is that you start questioning if you did enough to deserve the recovery. When this idea get's in my mind, an unnecessary feeling of guilt swells inside of me as I spend time relaxing, sleeping, and preparing meals. I feel like I should be out working harder. I like the perspective Craig Alexander brings to recovery when he says "recovery is the fourth discipline." It suggests that recovery is not something to be earned as a bonus, but rather something essential to productivity. It's essential to getting faster.

Alexander also mentions that there is a "mental side of recovery." On a macro-level, this suggests that we need a mental break from training (i.e. the off season within the progression of periodized training; recovery days; days off; recovery workouts). On a different level, it involves actually allowing our minds to recover on our recovery days. We often tell ourselves to GO, GO, GO, so we can mentally keep up with our overwhelming lives and training (not to mention keeping up with everyone else who seemingly does more and better quality work than we do). This mindset may be good when we actually have to expend energy, but it slows down our physical recovery on our built in recovery days. The mental side of recovery involves turning off those "GO, Go, GO" sirens, allowing ourselves to rest, and enjoying that rest. 

Check out this video with Craig Alexander! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tVpvKoEPSpA

If you're interested in  a triathlon coach, contact Power On Coach Jon Fecik! He can help you reach and exceed your goals!

Jon Fecik

Image from: http://triathlete-europe.competitor.com/2012/10/04/craig-alexander-the-game-face