This was the oddest, best, and worst recovery week I’ve ever had by a wide margin.
First the bad. It rained. For the entire week. Non-stop. Cold, wet, rain. The temps outdoor sat right around 5ish degrees or colder for just about the entire week, and once the rain started on Tuesday, it didn’t stop until Sunday in the wee early hours of the morning. The ground is absolutely soaked even with a full day of (relatively) nice weather.
I don’t run in the rain. I should. I know. I’m just not tough enough. So I don’t do it. But with it being recovery week, I figured it was no big deal. This is especially so considering the issues I was having with my left hamstring/calf muscle that I had started having last week. This little nagging pain grew into a golf-ball sized knot right at the top of my gastrocnemius (almost gone), an absurdly sore left glute (almost gone also), and lower back pain that has not relented in a week. How it got there I have no idea. But it did, and I missed quite a few workouts this week as a result. The rain kept me inside and the pain kept me feeling less guilty about not running in the rain.
On top of that, my job had its craziest week of the year last week. This is purely coincidental, though I should have been smart enough to plan a recovery week for that week regardless. I worked late (and I mean LATE) four out of five days last week, which left only my 5 AM rides achievable. The workouts I did get in were low intensity (by design), meaning my TSS this week is dreadfully low. Assuming I don’t get my ride in tonight (which is almost a given, considering I’m still not feeling up to riding due to my calf), I’ll have missed this week’s TSS by 500ish. Like I said, dreadful.
Today the sun came out. I was fairly sure that my leg had enough recovery that I could do a very slow paced 30 minute jog before I headed to the pool. I got out and managed to get about 11 minutes in before I called it quits. The pain wasn’t so bad that I couldn’t continue, but it was so bad that I shouldn’t continue. So I stopped. One full week of recovery and I couldn’t last more than 11 minutes running. What the hell is going on with my body? Furious, I came home, stomped and raged for a while, then went to the pool.
I had a moment in the pool where I decided that I didn’t care if I couldn’t run. I was going to swim my ass off anyway, and then I’d go home and have a great ride (assuming I wouldn’t make the leg worse doing so). So I did. I turned the effort knotch up a few pegs and went to work. Ended up with a decent 3200m workout at a good pace. I have not yet got my ride in tonight, and I’m not sure that I will, but that’s still TBD. I did hop on my bike for a minute or two just to see if the power stroke would affect my leg and it felt like it did a bit. Enough that I didn’t want to make it worse.
But I did get lots of great recovery in this week too. It wasn’t all bad. My lungs feel strong again, and my arms/upper body took quite a good bit of recovery too. Today, my swim went well and all was good despite having not swam in a week (that’s work’s fault, not the injury). I managed to get quite a good bit of sleep too. So it was good – because I got to recover, mostly. I made this easy week REALLY easy on me. Hoping that I don’t pay for it, but that’s tomorrow’s problem.
For now, I’m happy that I picked a recovery week where a) I needed it, b) the weather forced me to recover, and c) work didn’t interfere with training and training didn’t interfere with work. So, I guess the Recovery Week Gods favour me?
Back to work tomorrow. Hoping I’m feeling better and can get back to it.