Sunday, 18 April 2010

Post-Marathon Recovery Week #1

I have one eye on the calendar of upcoming events. The other looks inward to check on how my body is recovering from the marathon. Running 26.2 was the most physically difficult activity that I've ever done. I'm pretty tired, both mentally and physically.  In my inexperience, I didn't give any thought to how many days/weeks recovering from a marathon would take me.  I'm a little concerned that the Amsterdam Oly will come too soon in my training. I've pretty much decided not to run the Royal 10, since road races probably won't really add anything to my training. I can decide later.

Monday: barely ambulatory. Can't climb stairs normally.  Right adductor? hip flexor hurts. Craving protein and fat, especially red meat.  30 minute walk.
Tuesday: better, but still wobbly on my feet. Core workout; foam roller. 45 minute walk. Skip swimming.
Wednesday: regaining my senses. 4 k easy run.
Thursday: hugely tired.  Went to bed without dinner.
Friday: better. 6 km Bike to work. Legs fatigue easily. Business dinner.
Saturday: 6+10+7  km on the bike. Legs fatigue easily. Work all day. Blech. Business dinner.
Sunday: 9.2 km, of which 6 km are running. Remainder walking.  30/30 walk ratio; I aimed for ~730 pace. First several km were 7:19 - 7:30.  Hip started hurting, so I slowed the pace to 8 & 9 for the remaining two km.  Plus 6 km biking.

Thoughts on Tri-Training. I'm a little anxious about the amount of learning I need to do.  Swimming will be fine. I'm already in a good twice a week routine. I would like to add a day of doing TI drills at a pool where I can stand. I have skipped the last four practices though in order to taper for & then recover from the marathon.

Biking.  Hm.  The Carmichael book is written for the former 20-something hot shot, only twenty years later. It assumes a level of knowledge about bike racing that I don't have. It extols the virtue of a power meter.  I'm going to check in with my bike shop and see what they sell/say about this.  My Garmin really helps my running. So I assume a power meter would probably help me analyse my cycling. But learning curve.  When I feel good about my legs again, I would like to try the tri-training with the club and go for some more group rides.  I have a Sunday club I can ride with if I want more distance.   I can ride in the mornings. It's light enough and the weather is nice(r).

edited 21 Apr to add: I got a little further into the book: Following a lengthy discussion extolling the virtues of power meter training, finally the truth: "power meters are still quite expensive ($1,000 to $3,000), and it's unrealistic to expect all cyclists to invest in  them". Ya' Think?  I'm thinking I bought the wrong book. Maybe the book is still useful. The rest of the truth: "The truth is, in terms of effectiveness,  the difference between training with power  and with heart rate is a matter of degree."   Blah blah blah.  Oh, and I hate abbreviations. Jargon adds so much unnecessary distance between writer and reader.

Running. I would like to run faster. That makes me ask myself why, and whether I am willing to do what it takes. The First program could help me do this, I think. I have the endurance I need, but not the speed. And I'm not quite sure where to find my "entry" level in First - since my paces are hardly on their charts, but I trained well and ran a marathon (and two halfs, and two 16ks in the last year).

Core training: one weakness I have identified is focusing only on running and skipping the gym/lifting.  I'm putting my desire to learn Cross-Fit on hold. Basically, I'm finding it too difficult to teach myself, in addition to the other activities I like. And I'm quitting my gym membership to save money. So no Oly weight-lifting.  To make up for these deficiencies, I'm following the workouts I have in the book Core Performance. I really like them. I can do them at home. And they're oriented for sports/functional fitness. I am confident these workouts will help my tri-sports tremendously.

Nutrition:  get leaner. Be deliberate about planning & packing my meals. No grazing.

Putting it all together. I need to settle on a tri-specific training plan or cobble together my own bits & pieces, and see how it goes.  I have my eye on the number of training weeks remaining. It's okay and recovery is essential.  I don't want the hip thing to turn into an injury that dogs me this year.  The other piece is mental training. Daily sitting or walking meditation and working my way through the exercises in Working Out Working Within.  The pieces from that book that I brought on the marathon really helped me.

Next week's Assigned Run: 10 km.

Next week: Core workouts x3; swimming x2; three key runs; and I'll think about throwing a morning cycle into the route.  The weather's cooperating right now. And I just love to ride my bike.


  1. I know how I feel this morning after running only 25km on saturday, so I can only imagine your aches and pains. Looking at your week, I'm actually amazed you've managed to do so much - my thighs and hamstrings in particular seem to take at least a week to recover fully from a longer run. It might be wise to lay off the running/walking for a few more days to give yourself some physical (and mental) relief. A bit of weight training may be the diversion you need.

  2. WOW
    A lot to digest here! You are doing so much I feel like a sloth!

    Your blog on the SS was great today! Truly to the point and right on!


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