When we were in Kenya, I didn’t run once. To be honest, we really wanted to run (after all, it’s our favorite way to explore new places!), but it just wasn’t an option. Safety was a concern and when we were on safari, there simply wasn’t a place to run.
Before going on our trip, I was averaging ~50 miles/week. But after two weeks of goose egg mileage, I was worried it’d be a little rough getting back into it.
The day after we landed back in the states, I went out for an 11 miler. And boy did it hurt. My legs were trashed by the end.
I’ve heard people say you begin to lose endurance after X amount of days sans-running. Have you heard that before? I was worried I had lost a lot of the endurance I had been building prior to the trip.
We’ve been back stateside for two weeks now, and I’ve been able to jump right back into my training plan mileage (~55 miles/week) without any glitches. My legs feel better than ever.
Maybe taking two weeks off from running doesn’t hurt your endurance as much as we all fear? Maybe distance runners can retain their base of endurance, even if we take time off because of a trip, or injury, etc?
On Saturday, we went for our longest LR of the training cycle yet: 19 miles. We started running at 5AM, and enjoyed the quiet city streets to all ourselves.
Then enjoyed a beautiful sunrise.
And once the sun was up, we hopped on some gorgeous trails.
Weez had to finish up a bit before me, so I was on my own for the last 5 miles. I so much rather enjoy his company, so I ran ’em quick to finish those last miles and turned it into a rewarding progression run.
I guess what last weekend’s LR taught me, was that it’s okay to take some time off running if you need to; that you won’t lose as much endurance as you think; and that your legs will know how to hop right back into training!
Does anyone know of any studies/research that correlates time-off with loss of endurance with distance runners? If so, share it the comments below! I’d be curious to know!