Posted by: David Stewart | January 9, 2013

De-training really sneaks up on you

I spent the majority of the last quarter of 2012 traveling, mostly business but also a little vacation. I always like to run outside when I can, even on business travel. I’ve usually been pretty good on those trips to keep to my running regimen.

But with the cold weather where I was going (Finland and Romania) and with the shear length of the travel, my coach pretty much gave up on improving my running. I concentrated instead on shorter “maintenance” runs, most often on the treadmill.

This week, back at home, I have been trying to get back into a more regular training rhythm – a 14 mile training run on Saturday and a 7.5 mile group run Tuesday up-and-down some longer hills.

  • I tried to do the long run easy, and I was able to keep a reasonably good pace for most of it, even running a couple of the mile splits at a sub eight minute per mile pace. Endurance was of course the challenge, and was definitely starting to run out of gas towards the end.
  • The hilly Tuesday run was more of a challenge than I thought. The faster group runners were setting a fairly steady eight-plus minute per mile pace up hill. I was seeing some definite challenge keeping up with their pace in both strength and aerobic capacity.
  • On the plus side, my nagging summer injury – a sore plantar fascia – seems totally healed now. I felt absolutely no soreness, even with the long pounding downhills.

So I’m a victim of the effects of de-training. There will definitely be some serious work I will need to put in to get back leg strength and aerobic capacity. But on the good side, I’m much healthier than I was only a few months ago.

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