A common problem that I continue to see in training is athlete going hard when they’re supposed to go easy and that just translates into the inability to go hard when it really counts.
When training, always adding more distance, more intensity, and increased speed is not always better. What is better is finding balance. If you are working with a coach, you will usually have your key workouts followed by easy recovery workouts. If you are self-coached athlete, you can use the simple rule of training one hard key workout day following by one easy day.
All of your key workouts should be approached like a race day, meaning you should be focused, prepared, rested, and ready to perform. These training days are important for improving your performance. These are the workouts that you want to push yourself and go hard!
The easy day workouts are just as important. Taking it easy and getting ready for the next key workout is essential. These are the days where discipline is required to not go hard. For example: you go to the pool for a one mile recovery swim. However, you recognize an age-group competitor that jumps into the lane next to you. When you star swimming all your recovery plans are thrown out the the window because you start swimming faster and faster to beat him.
If you are training hard all the time, your body experiences a snow ball effect of fatigue with no time for recovery. The body had a difficult time even trying to go hard anymore.
Tip: Use you heart rate to measure you effort during your workouts.
Felipe Loureiro is a Multiport Coach and Founder of Breakaway Training www.breakawaytraining.com