After another 100 mile week I am now faced with the prospect of going for a three-peat or having a ‘down week’ to let my body recover. But does my body need time to recover or has it adapted to the new mileage and has this then become the norm. ? This links to the top 3 Golden Rules I abide to regarding distance , pace and not getting injured. Juggling these three is a fine balancing act and get it wrong you’ll be spending time on the sidelines watching all your fitness drain away, a runners worst nightmare.
I’m a big ‘listen to your body’ believer and also adding distance is possible if you have easy runs and avoid two hard sessions in a row. Raf Baugh, the Running Centre owner, ( http://therunningcentre.com.au )is a big advocate of big distance and doesn’t consider any mileage to be ‘junk miles’. As far as he is concerned they are all good, even the slow recovery ones. Taking this onboard I have made my second run of the day (how did this become the norm?) a slow one and must admit to enjoying the freedom of just running on heart rate rather than chasing pace and being constrained by the 1k Garmin splits. To this end I have managed a massive block of training since June but understand I am on a tightrope. This is sustainable for the moment as I train for the Perth Masters in October/November this year but must admit to looking forward to a month or two of ‘normal’ 100k a week running later in the year. (and maybe even a glass of red for Christmas)
This tightrope of distance, pace and avoiding injury is one all runners must walk and I know so many who have trained so hard for events and at the last minute been struck down with injury. Truth be told I don’t even like typing the word injury. !! Damn that’s twice I’ve typed it in one paragraph but it needs to be discussed. Every runner, in my opinion, has a distance where they can safely operate in, be this 40k, 100k or more. This is limited by their running gait, general genetics, weight, surface they train on, shoes etc. the list really is endless. Spend too much time outside the ‘safe zone’ and eventually its time to pay the piper.