I was the guest co-host this morning for the TrainingBible Coaching podcast, which is a great show on training by TBC Coaches Adam Zucco and Scott Iott. You can actually listen to the podcast here:
I was asked by Scott today to describe what a typical week for me was like as a professional triathlete, back when I raced and trained full-time. I hadn't really thought about that in awhile, and it seemed to hit me that everyone has always wanted to know what my "training" was like, but I have never once had an athlete ask me what my "recovery" was like.
In the podcast we discussed what the week looked like, and how many hours of training I did, but the conversation turned to me actually describing all the hours I put in which didn't show up on the power file or in the Garmin run data, and that was the recovery and preparation, which honestly were quite the commitment, and probably best allowed me to actually accomplish and maintain the level of training I was at in workouts.
For example, in the podcast I discussed these things and how many hours per week their commitment were, which don't show up in the "hours of training" on TrainingPeaks weekly summary.
Naps - 1 hour per day, 7 days per week = 7 hours
75 min massage each week = 1.25 hours
Rolling on the TP Therapy kit for 20 mins before each run, 6 days of running = 2 hours
Rolling every night to help advance recovery each night, 30 mins = 3.5 hours
This alone is 13.25 hours per week of training which is never posted in my training log as "training", but were just as important to the performance as training was. Oddly, 13.25 hrs is more time than many athletes spend training in a week, and that was my minimum commitment to recovery alone each week. When I was really tired, those naps might stretch to 2-3 hours, or if I was battling some slight injury, I was at ART appointments getting some specific areas more attention, which were 30 mins each session.
Maybe what we need to start doing as athletes and coaches is start prescribing recovery time, as much or nearly as much as we prescribe training time.