Why you should incorporate recovery weeks in your training

The mental aspect

The Nomad Athlete
2 min readJan 27, 2023
Photo by Michael DeMoya on Unsplash

It’s Friday morning, time to knock out the long run of the week. A couple of months into the 100-mile prep. It’s cold and wet, typical Finnish winter. The long runs are actually getting pretty long.

Throughout the run, I keep thinking “next week will be super nice”. The reason is that the next week is a recovery week, where my long run is a lot shorter.

My training plan consists of 3 weeks of progression, followed by a recovery week. The distances for the progression weeks could be 22km, 26km, and 30km. The recovery weeks’ long run could be 18km.

You don’t need to do much research to find out that plans like this are powerful in terms of progress, pretty much for every sport. A recovery week is needed to recover(surprise, surprise), in order to keep pushing.

But I think it‘s’ just as important for the mental aspect of it. Like with my run, thinking about the recovery week coming up made the run much easier. Thinking that I can push through now for a few hours, then I will have shorter runs and recover in the next two weeks.

Looking at a 6-month training block might be overwhelming, it might even keep you from getting started. Breaking it down makes it bearable. You might have milestones like the daily goal, maybe a rest (or active recovery) day every week, and finally you have the recovery week.

Focus on the micro goals, and before you know it, you’ve completed the macro goal.



The Nomad Athlete

Endurance athlete, digital nomad, nerd. Just a normal guy trying to figure out fitness, business, and life. https://thenomadathlete.gumroad.com/l/abetterlife