Wednesday, June 4, 2014

What Exactly is Recovery Anyway?

Two thoughts have been on my mind lately. and I am wondering if the great internet community can help me understand life, or at least these two issues. 
First, I keep hearing how important recovery and rest are for athletes. I believe the hype, and have been riding less hours for the past few months, and taking more days off the bike than I ever did before. The point about recovery that confuses me is, what do you do when you are "recovering"? I often find myself, as I imagine all working athletes do, running around making dinner, doing laundry, unloading and loading the dish washer, walking the dog, and cleaning the house. Sometimes, if my workout was hard, my legs hurt when I'm standing in the kitchen making dinner. I can't imagine this is good for recovering from that workout, but that meal needs to get made. I have heard ex pro roadie friends say you should be off your feet as much as possible when not riding, but that doesn't seem possible/reasonable? So what does recovery/rest mean? Is one to sit on their butt all afternoon, and force the significant other to make the meals and do the chores? Or am I being to wimpy, and should I suck it up and do the things because a little standing after a workout isn't going to kill me? 
This leads to the second question I have been pondering. What does one do on a day off the bike? I find myself wanting to go hike with the dog, work in the garden, or go to Yoga, but are those activities really rest? I get restless avoiding physical activity, but I'm not sure I am actually resting if I spend these days physically exerting myself. 
So great internet community, what do you think about recovery and rest? I would love to hear what works for other working athletes, or anyone else with an opinion! Maybe one day I'll know what I am doing with this bike racing thing!
PS, Tuesday nights are the best because we rotate who cooks, so I am off the hook most Tuesdays. This week we had amazing buffalo tacos thanks to Keith! Like always, they were the best tacos EVER!

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