Thursday, December 19, 2013

Recovering Legs and Sanity: The Off Season

Off season, off season, oh how I look forward to you all year! There seems to be no shortage of cool, interesting and non-structured workouts to be done during this time, and after a long year of being prescribed what to do every day, it’s so cool to mix it up. A long time ago when my first baby was a baby, I started teaching fitness classes at the Y in my neighborhood. Now cycling takes up a majority of my year. I don’t often do the workouts I lead in my classes, and I look forward to this time, when I can squat, jump, burpee and lunge my legs away without worrying about how it will impact a Sunday race.

I have been working out in this manner for two months now. It is humbling, and my weak points glare at me through sore hips and stressed shoulders, and minute aches and pains threatening to remind me that I am not 20 anymore.  I visit Mark Kane for trigger point dry needling*, but I have a really hard time taking days off where I don’t exercise at all. I am that much of an endorphin junkie. I shudder to think that the treat I ate last night will somehow end up on my thighs should I miss the next workout. Yet these minor aches and pains lead me to wonder what is missing, and after being coached for three years it wasn’t hard to figure it out: recovery rides!!!!!

Coach Laura would be proud, because the recovery ride mindset is now engrained in my brain. As soon as my hips and legs start to protest, I know that a day or two of recovery rides are in order. It is decidedly less interesting to sit on the trainer while watching the latest episodes of Grey’s Anatomy, but I understand now that my body will perform better if I take an easy day in between the madness.

Kane Cross Training and Winter Training 1 at TotalCyclist are underway as I write this, but I know that recovery workouts and rides are a part of my week, and I have even grown to enjoy the hour I spend spinning alone in the dark garage, wasting my brain on tawdry television, while my legs rejuvenate and prepare for the next time I will jump them into oblivion.


*Information on Mark’s magic and needling technique can be found at:

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