Key re­cov­ery stres­sors and how to re­solve them

Trail Running (UK) - - Training -

INAD­E­QUATE RE­COV­ERY SES­SIONS

Push­ing too hard on easy days or rarely tak­ing full rest days are both big fac­tors for run­ners in fa­tigue build-up.

SO­LU­TION: Com­plete re­cov­ery runs to heart-rate, so look to train at 60-70% max HR. If you find you’re al­ways push­ing too hard on your easy days, then con­sider vary­ing your train­ing to in­clude ac­tiv­i­ties like swim or bike ses­sions in­stead of a run.

POOR SLEEP

Deep sleep phases re­lease growth hor­mones, while re­bal­anc­ing sodium and elec­trolytes in the kid­neys.

SO­LU­TION: To achieve qual­ity sleep, stop us­ing smart­phones in the fi­nal 60-90 min­utes be­fore bed – the blue light will af­fect mela­tonin lev­els. Cre­ate a cool, dark en­vi­ron­ment and aim for a con­sis­tent pat­tern of sleep and wake times – ease off caf­feine and al­co­hol late at night.

POOR NU­TRI­TION

Inad­e­quate fu­elling and hy­dra­tion, both in terms of qual­ity and quan­tity, can lead to reg­u­lar neg­a­tive en­ergy bal­ances when train­ing hard. You’ll see your body de­plet­ing key fats, glyco­gen and pro­tein as well as vi­ta­mins and min­er­als.

SO­LU­TION: Take on a good mix of car­bo­hy­drates and pro­tein within 30-40 min­utes of fin­ish­ing a ses­sion and aim for a var­ied diet packed with fruit and veg, fol­low­ing the mantra ‘never hun­gry, never over­full’.

KNOW­ING YOUR BODY

Even with all of our mod­ern tech­nol­ogy, it can prove hard to re­ally know what’s hap­pen­ing in­side your body.

SO­LU­TION: Blood test­ing sev­eral times in a key train­ing cy­cle will give you the best pic­ture of your fa­tigue sta­tus, and they’re now cheaper and eas­ier than ever for run­ners. Look for blood tests (www.medichecks.com) that check out key mark­ers such as cor­ti­sol and testos­terone bal­ance, fer­ritin and iron sta­tus, C-re­ac­tive pro­tein and cre­a­tine ki­nase.

LACK OF REST

Run­ners strug­gle to ac­cept that rest is cru­cial to per­for­mance, and of­ten push them­selves too hard as a re­sult.

SO­LU­TION: Take a pe­riod dur­ing each year or train­ing cy­cle where you com­pletely stop run­ning. Stretch reg­u­larly, or maybe try a low-im­pact sport like cy­cling or swim­ming.

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