Anne suggested this topic and it’s a good one. I know my biggest issue is taking days off. Cycling can be addictive and, from what I see on Strava, many of you may have the same problem. Rest days are just as important as training days and need to be part of recovery for cyclists.
1. Why you need recovery days:
- When you’re training on a consistent basis, you actually put stress on your body and breakdown your muscles.
- Over time, and through combination of training and rest (periodization), your muscles are repaired to be stronger than before.
- Without adequate rest, you can experience burnout, a lack of energy, and decreased motivation. Scheduling rest days, and ensuring you take them, is equally as important as time on your bike.
2. How much is enough:
- How much rest needed will be different for everyone, so you have to learn what your body needs.
- A general rule is to ensure that at least one day a week is a rest day.
3. What you can do to aid your recovery:
- Fuel – Make sure you have protein to repair damaged muscles as well as fruits and vegetables to get a dose of vitamins and minerals.
- Stretch and roll – Stretching and rolling your muscles on rest days is one of the most effective ways to prevent injury
- Sleep – It’s also the prime time to undergo protein synthesis, which is the process that makes your muscles stronger.
- Active Recovery – Active recovery can be a great way to get the mental release you need, while not taking a toll on your body. A walk, swim, or other easy activity will get your body moving and your muscles loosened up, but won’t be too strenuous on your tired muscles.
You can learn more from the following article:
Quote of the week: “Warm out today, warm yesterday, even warmer today.” – Stewie Griffin