Sunday, January 27, 2008

Correcting the Overreaching

Last week netted 41 miles as I stomped on the brakes to avoid crashing. Signs popped up that showed that my improvement stopped and a minor injury (right leg pain) was not going away. Even though I am not fatigued (my normal symptom of overtraining) these are signs that I need to pay attention to and correct before I ruin my season.

I just read a so-so book on running called Fast Track by Suzy Favor Hamilton. In this book, she used the term "overreaching" as the precursor to overtraining. It is a common point in training when the overloading effect is just a tad too much and improvement stalls. It is caused by "too much exercise, too few calories, and too little rest". (I paraphrased the book).

The cure is merely reversing the cause. Exercise less, eat more (or enough) and rest up. So that is what I did last week and will do throughout next week. I feel really well and besides the occasional pain in the right leg when I first get up, I'm doing pretty good. I am also increasing the massage therapy frequency to weekly from bi-weekly.

This is what happens to the best laid plans. I did pretty good on the lengthy build to 98 miles. I had hoped to hold this mileage for 6 weeks before transitioning into the speed work. Now I am rethinking this plan. After this down mileage week I'll have 3 weeks left on the original plan. If all goes well (meaning I'm ready to resume training) I am thinking of foregoing the final 3 weeks of aerobic building and installing a 3 week easy / progressively harder hill phase before the speed starts.


Book update:


Fast Track by Suzy Favor Hamilton & Jose Antonio
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling


Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling


Blogger Marc said...

Nice to see you taking the R&R approach (reduce and recover).

Sorry your training has been interupted, but you'll be back soon.

Take the time to enjoy this week - maybe even sleep in 'til 4 am!

1/28/2008 5:12 AM  
Blogger Grellan said...

Great to see that you had the intuition to spot the overreacing before you overreached and the maturity to cut back on training to recharge - not all of us are blessed with those skills, but i'm learning fast.

1/28/2008 8:56 AM  
Blogger Love2Run said...

Hope things work themselves out for you but it's sounding like a bit of a crash to me. Maybe those 4am mornings finally caught up with you? Take care!

1/28/2008 7:36 PM  

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