The recovery run is an important component of my weekly training schedule. It’s an opportunity to shake out the fatigue and tiredness from the legs and get them ready for another week of intense training. However more importantly it is a great opportunity to add extra distance to my training without the heavy load associated with more intense runs, like the tempo, interval and long run.
Last Friday I completed my longest training run of the season, a 30km (18.6mi) run, all over Amsterdam. Although this long run was at a comfortable pace, the distance and time on the legs still takes it’s toll on the body.
There is no question that training for a marathon requires you to cover a lot of distance during your training, however it’s not possible to do all of this during the more intense periods of running. Therefore my recovery run each week is an opportunity to add between 5-10km (3.1-6.2mi) to my weekly total without adding any more stress to the body and therefore increasing the amount of time I need for recovery.
For me these recovery runs are much slower than my normal long run training pace. I describe it as more of a slow jog or shuffle than a run. The main objective for me is to keep my heart rate as low as possible, focusing on nice deep breathes. This ensures I am not placing any undue stress on my body and it focuses my mind on my breathing.