Last weekend saw my recovery weeks post Challenge Melbourne come to a close. The mornings of pressing the snooze button on my alarm are over and the late nights catching up on TV series have come to an end. With two weeks until my next competition, Mooloolaba Olympic Distance Triathlon, I have dived back into a busy training week with 11 sessions totalling 11.5km in the pool, 210km on the bike and 38km of running.
Luckily for me my body is used to this training load but how do you know if your body can cope with the load of a new fitness program?Over the years I have learnt to read my body and understand its signals when I’m doing too much or not pushing hard enough. I was fortunate enough to make it through the 2013 season injury free and that is for one main reason: I listened to my body and I learnt to be flexi.
There is a fine balance between finding excuses not to train, and needing to take a break. One of the biggest lessons I’ve learnt from training for endurance events is you need to be flexible-if you miss a training session because you worked late, or because you had a family function to attend, you can’t simply cram that session into your next day.
This simply isn’t feasible and more often than not leads to under performing at each session, and ultimately feeling sore, frustrated and tired for the following days. Failure to listen to your body may result in burnout or injury which ultimately sets you back in your long term training scheme. The main signs that you are over training include:
Fatigue – this doesn’t simply mean tiredness after a workout. You may feel flat and unmotivated in daily activities (sometimes even depressed), experience a decrease in the power you can sustain in a workout, or an inability to train to full capacity.
Muscle soreness/pain – sometimes when you start a session you may feel tightness inyour muscles or restriction in your joints. This usually eases once the warm up is complete – if you have been over doing it you will not recover from this initial stage of muscle soreness and often not be able to complete your workout.
Moood changes – over training causes athletes to become irritable and extra sensitive to criticism. Think about how you feel after a disrupted night sleep or a late night out – you feel sensitive and fragile and in the case of over training this is a constant feeling.
The only cure for over training is rest, and the length of time required for full recovery depends on how long you have been over training – anywhere from five days to five weeks rest may be required. So learning to read your body and adapt your training program is vital – no one wants to run the risk of a forced sustained break in the lead up to a big event. If in doubt, run your training program by your Osteopath or Myotherapist and they will use their expertise to help tweak your program to help keep you moving through life!
So as I ease into my next phase of training, I am excited to say I will be racing a short distance Triathlon this weekend purely for fun! Yes, Sunday March 2nd is the Melbourne Corporate Triathlon race taking place at Elwood and not only will I be competing as part of a team, but I will be competing with fellow Osteopaths and Myotherapists from Beyond Hawthorn and Beyond Windsor clinics.
Six of our Beyond team members will be competing in the 400m swim/10km bike/ 4km run mini triathlon, sporting our newest Beyond Triathlon and Cycling range. Keep your eyes on our Facebook page for some happy snaps of our latest triathlon stars and I look forward to sharing a full race report with you next week! Happy training!