Hello everyone. I have been training really hard for last 11 months (all indoor) . First 6 months 4 times a week and than 5 times a week. As a result I managed to rise my FTP from 160W to 225W and lose 12kg (72kg ->60kg). Next week I am finishing my last planned part of structured training (BUILD 2 phase) and can’t wait to implement my gains outdoor. But, to be honest at the moment I can feel the symptoms of overtraining and generally feel tired (both physically and mentally) so I need a good rest. How long is long enough but not too long? What you usually do during this period?
I think many say, until you feel like training again. Your body has a knack for sending you signals. You might feel these to a lesser extent during recovery weeks where you feel like crap the first few days, but then as the week goes on you start to look forward to the next block.
You should do what you like, but most importantly eat and sleep. Walking is a good way to get some exercise during this period without overdoing it.
Most likely you aren’t overtrained and this won’t take long. I’ve heard chad say 2 days completely off the bike to start, but you may need a bit more time than that. I’d say, don’t worry about getting back on the bike until you want to. When you want to, you’ll know you are ready.
Good advise above. My n=1 Experience was when I was burnt out after Build before starting the Specialty phase. I had been training all year for my A race and now it was just about 2 months away. I took 3 full days off the bike, something I hadn’t done all year, and removed everything cycling related (ie: this forum, youtube videos, etc.). I needed to rest my mind and body of cycling. Then I came back into my recovery week and made it extra easy and even added an extra off the bike day later in the week. By the following Tuesday when Specialty was set to start I was refreshed and ready to go. 2 weeks later I had one of my best B races of the year. I went on to nail my A race and that was a 17.5 hour event with a 35% completion rate.
First of all, congratulations! 11 months of indoor structure is a lot or work both physically and mentally, so major kudos on that. Also, way to go on both power gains and some weight loss - that’s huge! I’d say you’ve earned a break. Taking time off is super personal, and isn’t just physical. It can give you some time to be mentally ready to go again. So I would say pick an amount of time - say a week - double it, and make it into two phases. First week, don’t ride. This is your rest week. Second week, only ride if and when you want to. This week is for your mental state, but also gives you some time to check in with your body and see how it’s feeling. Go from there. You don’t lose too much by taking a couple weeks off, and it can do wonders for your mental state.
Personally, I take two weeks totally off the bike and then a further two or three of only riding when I want to. By the time that’s done I’m itching to train again and I jump back in. Your mileage may vary.
Thank you all for your help. I am enjoying my rest time and charging batteries for another year in the saddle.