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Running Off Season

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  • 08-11-2018 12:15pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 115 ✭✭


    Hi

    I am considering taking a few weeks down time after a long season of racing, track, road and XC.

    I know there is no such thing as a running off season like you would have in other sports but I am curious as to what runners do during a period of downtime.

    Taking a break is something runners really struggle with and I am no different. Do you stop running altogether? Cross train? Run easy? Workout? Play other sports?

    In my opinion we don't take enough time off and after a few days of not running we get anxious and start back again and before you know it you are banging out 800s on the track :rolleyes:


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,606 ✭✭✭ultrapercy


    I wouldnt ever take a break of more than a couple of days. There is a big difference between running and training. I just ran DCM but Im back doing an hour a day and some gym work to feel normal and because I enjoy it. To me this isnt training its just a normal part of my day like brushing my teeth and I dont feel great if I dont do it. Il continue like this till the hunger to focus returns,probably after Christmas. Training for me is about scheduals and targets and its that I need the break from not so much the physical efforts.


  • Registered Users Posts: 95 ✭✭wookiesleep


    After the Marathon I'll generally just run a couple of days a week to stretch the legs. I drink and eat to my hearts desire then I feel guilty and start preping for some halfs.

    Must say I enjoy the downtime though.


  • Registered Users Posts: 7,695 ✭✭✭Chivito550


    Track athletes (particularly sprinters and middle distance runners) always take a break at the end of the track season. Sprinters tend to take anywhere from 4-6 weeks off. Much of that would be a complete break, then a few easy runs to ease back in. It’s both a physical break to let the body recover, and a mental break after spending so long working towards a goal, which can be very mentally draining.

    Long distance runners seem afraid to take breaks. They tend to just keep rolling from track into XC into roads and back to track.

    I personally have no issue with taking 6 weeks of no running. The break serves a purpose as by the end of it I feel very unfit and really want to sort that out. By that point I’m rejuvenated and am looking forward to training again.

    All the best track athletes take breaks (the shorter distance ones anyway). Thomas Barr took 6 weeks off immediately after Berlin this year for example.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,606 ✭✭✭ultrapercy


    Chivito550 wrote: »
    Track athletes (particularly sprinters and middle distance runners) always take a break at the end of the track season. Sprinters tend to take anywhere from 4-6 weeks off. Much of that would be a complete break, then a few easy runs to ease back in. It’s both a physical break to let the body recover, and a mental break after spending so long working towards a goal, which can be very mentally draining.

    Long distance runners seem afraid to take breaks. They tend to just keep rolling from track into XC into roads and back to track.

    I personally have no issue with taking 6 weeks of no running. The break serves a purpose as by the end of it I feel very unfit and really want to sort that out. By that point I’m rejuvenated and am looking forward to training again.

    All the best track athletes take breaks (the shorter distance ones anyway). Thomas Barr took 6 weeks off immediately after Berlin this year for example.
    I presume this isnt 6 weeks of no exercise though. 6 weeks of inactivity would lead me to depression. Maybe 6 week of trying other sportsor hiking etc? 6 weeks of sitting on my hole would lead me to being a fat depressed alchaholic grouch.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,270 ✭✭✭jfh


    good question, i'm in the same boat. usually i'd start back up again after the marathon but advised by physio to take a month off to rest legs & address certain weakness that lead to injury. i think i need it to freshen up mentally too, others are different.

    good article here;

    http://www.sweatelite.co/the-end-of-season-rest-periods-of-the-worlds-best-athletes/


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  • Registered Users Posts: 7,695 ✭✭✭Chivito550


    ultrapercy wrote: »
    I presume this isnt 6 weeks of no exercise though. 6 weeks of inactivity would lead me to depression. Maybe 6 week of trying other sportsor hiking etc? 6 weeks of sitting on my hole would lead me to being a fat depressed alchaholic grouch.

    Yeh exactly. Keep fit, but get out of the idea that you are training. For me that might be some swimming (with the obligatory steam room/sauna/jacuzzi for good measure), going for hikes, the odd parkrun, sometimes even train 2 weeks for a 10K for the laugh, and during the off-season I'll be away at major championships which involves a lot of running around the place, and also a lot of walking if sightseeing is involved.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,414 ✭✭✭Testosterscone


    Chivito550 wrote: »
    The break serves a purpose as by the end of it I feel very unfit and really want to sort that out. By that point I’m rejuvenated and am looking forward to training again.
    ultrapercy wrote: »
    I presume this isnt 6 weeks of no exercise though. 6 weeks of inactivity would lead me to depression. Maybe 6 week of trying other sportsor hiking etc? 6 weeks of sitting on my hole would lead me to being a fat depressed alchaholic grouch.

    For me I think this is where the initial idea applied by elites doesn't match up with general public interpretation

    I have seen plenty of elites mention no training for a month to 6 weeks and yet when someone questions a run or some other activity the reply usually is responded to as "oh that doesn't count as I wasn't training"

    Activity vs training is completely different and even in sprints, 6 weeks of muscle atrophy is enough to cause more lean muscle loss than you can build over the course of a season so maintenance should be necessary.

    Minimum maintenance activity would probably be more appropriate than the term rest.


  • Registered Users Posts: 115 ✭✭Mos Eisley


    Seems the elites are better at switching off than the average Joes but that isnt hugely surprising when you consider that running is their profession. I have no problem taking a few weeks off work each year without feeling guilty!

    I suppose it is very individual. My thoughts would be take say a week off completely then return to a few easy runs for enjoyment and weight management! Add a little cross training & some S&C then plan for the season ahead.

    As stated above, for the average Joe, taking a break doesn't mean stopping altogether like some the pros do. Its more about taking a step back and not letting running consume you like it does when IN season. Give the body a break and hopefully it will pay you back over the season.

    I often get to the middle of a season feeling tired and regretting not taking a longer break so hopefully I'll get it right this year!!

    Thanks for all the reply's


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,717 ✭✭✭YFlyer


    Injuries allow me to take a break.


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