Work, rest and play are vital to deliver results and avoid injury

June 26th, 2017 11:00 AM

By Southern Star Team

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Getting sufficient rest between training sessions is crucial to your success. 

Fitness with Paudie O’Donovan, Neuromuscular Physical Therapist

GETTING sufficient rest between training sessions is crucial to your success. 

Life can be exhausting for a whole load of reasons, but if you find yourself making excuses when it comes to your cycles you need to ask yourself are you sure you are getting enough? 

Not enough rest between bike sessions means you will feel tired before, during and after while also greatly increasing your risk of injury.


Rest should be as much a part of the regime as actually going out on the bike. Training stresses the body and makes you feel tired, Rest makes you adapt to the training and improve performance.

Fatigue is our signal that we are pushing our physical limits. It can also be a warning that we are pushing too hard and need to back off a little.

 Doing two or three weekday rides plus longer, more adequate rides on Saturdays or Sundays is more effective than saving all of your training for the weekend. 

You’ll teach your body to push on a consistent basis, keep your metabolism high, and recover quicker. 

Plus you’ll get to enjoy the mood boosting benefits of exercise more frequently.

As you become fitter you’ll find that there’s two types of rest - passive and active.

Passive is putting you feet up and giving your muscles the optimum chance to heal quicker.

Active is doing a light walk or swim or doing a light 20 minute recovery cycle. Cyclists usually find that active rest works for them.



Only by recognising that you are tired and resting will you properly recover from your workout and let your body become stronger and fitter. 

As a rule of thumb when starting out, it’s best to have one rest day for every work out that you do, that way you recover properly.

How should you rest and recover? 

This depends on the individual. What works for one cyclist might not work for another. 

Recovery is highly individual as everyone recovers at different rates and so you have to find what works for you and tailor your programme around it. 

Eating while recovering is vital, so after workouts and during your rest days make sure you get into the habit of hydrating well, eating well and getting enough hours sleep. 

It takes sleep to build your body back up to being more powerful than before. It is recommended that a person gets eight hours sleep a night. Naps are also a great idea. 

If you have a lot going on and can’t get a full night sleep, take a 20 minute nap and you’ll feel much better after it. 

Next week I’ll talk about consistency in training.

Week 7:  Monday, June 26th- Sunday July 2nd

Monday - Rest

Tuesday - 15k cycle

Wednesday - Rest

Thursday - 15/18k cycle

Friday - Rest

Saturday - 40/50k cycle

Sunday - Rest

Total cycled this week - 70/83k


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