Last week I happened to get a particular nasty cold that turned into an upper respiratory infection. I am huge baby once I get the sniffles and being sick not only puts a damper on my training, but effects our office and my patients as I avoid getting them sick by taking time off to recover.
For most athletes getting sick raises the question of if they should work out or not. The answer isn't always simple, but the first step is to sit down and evaluate what exactly you are feeling to decide on the right course of action. Feel free to skip to the bottom if you are already feeling sick and just want to know if you should work out or not, but trying to prevent seasonal cold & flu might be your best bet.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure
Let's start by talking about prevention. Although the average adult gets two to three upper respiratory infections a year it doesn't mean you have to.
Avoid over training.
While studies suggest being active will help reduce the chances of catching and the duration of a cold, the average triathlete flirts with over training which can hinder your immune response. Over training is a major contributing factor for many triathletes and one of the best ways to measure this is with your morning heart rate. Make a habit of taking your pulse first thing in the morning before getting out of bed, make it a part of your training journal with notes about how you are feeling in a general sense. After establishing a good baseline on well days, you can assess mornings that you wake up fatigued and or sore. With a heart rate that is 5% higher than your base you will want to scale back your workout that day and lower the intensity. If your heart rate is 10% higher than the base, just take the day or two off completely to rest. Also know the other symptoms of over training
So the 2nd Denver Triathlon is 10 weeks from yesterday. I'm liking the fact that it's been moved up to June 10th, the timing is such that this is now one of my "A" races for the summer. Even better, I found a great 10 week Olympic training plan to use. The fact that I've only got a few 10K's and a 1/2 Marathon in May mean that all my energy and focus on tri training will be for Denver Triathlon specifically! I've got other races later in the summer (Ironman Racine, Chicago Triathlon, and Chicago Marathon), but it's nice to have no conflicts with my "A" race.
This week involves big time ramping up after a winter maintenance plan. I've got about 700 training minutes this week, with two strength sessions. Next week will be even more epic- 900 minutes plus two strength sessions. The seasonal timing is perfect, too. The weather is springlike, making those long bike rides fun. I'm going to re-acquaint myself with the track after a long winter stuck on the treadmill. I averaged about 400 minutes of training over the winter, so this body is due for a little shock for the month of April. I started out the plan yesterday with a 100 100's swim set. 10,000 yards in the pool was a great way to get the "official" training season started!!!
Looking forward to getting 'er done over the next few months!
I'm sitting here on this Friday night, drinking a beer, wondering how drinking a beer will affect my training. One beverage with dinner plays an insignificant part in the diet, I conclude. On the otherhand, weekend over-indulgence is obviously to be avoided. And what about those post-race libations?
Triathlon is a lifestyle, it is definitely what you make of it. To sum up the sequence of this lifestyle, you:
A. Make goals to train, and sign up for races
D. Gain accomplishment
Let us first take a close look at Part C, to eventually tie in the beer. Pre-race is mostly preparation, whether it be the carbs you ate the night before, the strategically planned potty break, to the gush of adrenaline the moment before your wave hits the water. The duration of the race is a showcase of your daily, weekly, and monthly training. Post-race activities include anything to recover. In my experience, it is dedicated to three things, usually in the following order:
1. Trying to find those people you thought were going to meet you at the finish line
2. Signing up for a massage before having to wait for an hour
3. EATING! I swear I pay $90 only to stuff my face in the breakfast line, and think next time there is no breakfast line if I finish first, right?
Here at the Denver Triathlon we are proud of our brand ambassadors and what they represent, which is of course the multi-sport lifestyle! We have twenty ambassadors from all different walks of triathlon life and with the enthusiasm for the sport of triathlon, we have all decided to give them a bigger voice within the race. Starting here with the new Bran Ambassador Blog.
Here we will share posts, thoughts, race experiences and much more from our team of athletes. We hope that you will join us on this new blog and please feel free to share your comments with us as this new medium takes shape on our website!
- Race Director, Chris Laskey