Do you strategically take breaks from training?

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Scott Warr
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  • Just ran the Pikes Peak Marathon yesterday. The best thing to happen to me during training was a calf injury in late May. Forced to take 2 weeks off, I came back stronger and trained harder leading up to yesterday. So technically for me an unforseen break in training, I will think about it next spring as a strategy. I didn’t lose any fitness during my recovery. Thanks to TRN for your podcasts. The information contained therein paid huge dividends and I am grateful for what you have put together here. Keep it up and thanks again.

  • Yes and I usually switch it out for speed work and more heavy lifting to correct imbalances and add lean mass, 4-6 weeks of lowered volume a few times per year and then back hard another 4-6 months. 😀

  • I’ve honestly been running pretty hard since Way to cool this year.. had a really stressful half of the year and running long has been my savior. Signed up for six trail races (one marathon and one 50k) from now through December so I am afraid to stop or slow down – I am listening to my body and its not screaming at me, yet. My belief is you can keep going as long as you balance out training with recovery and this includes cross training and core workouts. My question is after early December when my 50k is done and right before I start training for my spring ultra’s how much time should I take off? So I have not taken a strategic break since summer 2011.

    • Scott your question: “My question is after early December when my 50k is done and right before I start training for my spring ultra’s how much time should I take off?” –

      My opinion: What if I suggested take 3 weeks off? Performance gains occur with focus and intensity followed with rest. Rest to heal the body and mind. I have not experienced a loss of fitness with a 3 week hiatus. (I side stepped any scientific references. There are studies that measure the results of complete bed rest with significant decrease in physical capacity. So don’t lie in bed for 3 weeks straight!!)

      It’s time to rest if you don’t ANXIOUS to train. A common theme on the podcast is to learn and listen to your body. With that said, take the first week completely off with a second week of easy slow and short stuff and then….listen.

      I hope others pitch in and contribute to this topic, you have asked a great question Scott.

  • I do not feel I loose fitness taking a few weeks off but I do gain weight if I do not reduce my food intake. When this happens I feel like I am digressing because when I start again I am less efficient because I am packing more lbs around.

  • I do not feel I lose fitness taking a few weeks off but I do gain weight if I do not reduce my food intake. When this happens I feel like I am digressing because when I start again I am less efficient because I am packing more lbs around.

  • I take 4-7 planned weeks off every year. I generally focus on 1 big race and 1 secondary race (both 100-milers) and put them 2-4 months apart. After the 2nd one, I take 1-month to 7-weeks not running more than 7-9 miles MAX and not more than 2-3 times a week (sometimes only 1 run a week around 5-7 miles). I come back HUNGRY and eager to train, and feeling semi-fresh, and repeat the build/process.

    In between the 1st & 2nd hundo, I take 4 “easy” weeks with maybe only 1-2 runs over 20-miles, where my weekly volume drops more than 50%. I ran AC100 back in late July, since then have run OVER 20-miles 1 time (a 26-miler 3-4 weeks after AC) and this week will be my biggest week since at around 60-65 miles. My peak training mileage is between 80-100 miles.

    REST is key.

  • I only take a few days off after hard races and ultras. I don’t plan how long I take off and just feel what my legs are like when I wake up in the morning. If they feel OK I start training for the next goal.

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