Here are four mistakes that are common to all endurance athletes.
Becoming a better endurance athlete takes time. There are a few mistakes that are common to all endurance athletes. Without a training plan, you’re more likely to make mistakes that seem like a good idea at the time but end up having long term detrimental effects to your fitness.
- Relying on outputs to tell you you’re fit.
- Trying to reach your peak in week 1.
- Thinking every workout needs to be perfect.
- Ignoring recovery weeks.
Relying on outputs to tell you your fit
Pace, power, speed, time, and distance are all outputs. These outputs are a result of how much effort you put into your activity. If you rely on one or more of your outputs to tell you that you’re training well, you’ll inevitably over train yourself. For example, a runner who is tired from a hectic day at work may train harder than they intend because they’re looking at running pace and they think their pace has to be at a certain level otherwise they are “unfit”.
Solution. Train with heart rate. Heart rate is the only accessible way to measure your input. Input is the amount of effort you are putting into a workout. If you’re tired from a hectic day at work and you try to run at the same pace you ran yesterday, your heart rate will be higher than yesterday. If you’re monitoring your heart rate you now know that you’re training harder than you intend and you should slow down. Training by heart will ensure you’re training at the right intensity for YOU, regardless of how hectic your day at work was.
Trying to reach your peak in week 1
If you’re starting your first training plan or you’re getting back into training after a big race it’s important to hold yourself back. Getting into training can be exciting and you’ll get rush of endorphins from your new exercise routine. You may feel like you can go a bit longer, a it faster or do an extra session. NO! If you’re getting back into training after having time off after a big event you may feel like you need to be back at the same fitness level you were only a couple of weeks beforehand. NO!
“Endurance is the ability of an organism to exert itself and remain active for a long period of time, as well as its ability to resist, withstand, recover from, and have immunity to trauma, wounds, or fatigue.”
To build endurance, we must train session after session, week after week, month after month. If you’re forced to have time off training because you’re tired or injured as a result of going hard out of the gates, you’ll lose more fitness than you stand to gain by trying to do a bit extra. Thinking every workout needs to be perfect.
They’re not all gold medals. Some days aren’t good days. It is 100% certain that you will fail to complete one or more of your key workouts as prescribed. It is part of endurance training. It does not mean you’re a failure, it does not mean you’re unfit, and it definitely does not mean you to train harder or make up for it in your next workout. If anything, failure to complete a prescribed workout shows you’re fatigued and it’s a good idea to rest. The Endurance Training Hub has the ability to move your workouts around, so you can complete them on the days that suit your schedule and energy levels.
Ignoring recovery weeks
The idea of endurance training is to apply specific stress to your muscles and then recovery to allow them to adapt to stress. Without the recovery part of the endurance training equation, you’ll not adapt and not improve your fitness. Instead, you’ll continue to build fatigue and plateau or get injured. All Endurance Training Hub training plans have built-in recovery weeks to ensure you’re always building fitness.