Am I training at work?

  • Creator
  • #48259

    I have been a weekend warrior for a couple of decades now but have had a difficult time adhering to any sort of structured training. I believe the crux of my problem is that I have a physical job that keeps me on my feet and variably active all day. This makes recovery from big weekend efforts take longer and can make after work efforts more difficult to get motivated for, more notably as I get older. I have been wondering lately if the activity I am doing during the day counts as “zone 2 training” and how I can adapt and work around it rather than work against it. Is there a way measure this? I still have so much I want to accomplish.

    Thanks, Joe

  • Participant
    Reed on #48268

    You are accumulating fatigue, but probably not in a way that builds fitness. There are plenty of examples of successful structured training while balancing a physical day job. Steve House has written about working as a guide while training (and how ignoring the fatigue of the day job can lead to overtraining). Ed Viesturs worked full days of light construction, swinging a framing hammer, before going out for his weekday 8-mile run. He used that fitness to climb 8,000m peaks without oxygen. You might find that focusing on building a stronger aerobic base, with more Zone 1 work and some strength training, might make both your weekend activities and day job easier.

    coversall on #48272

    Good question, I work as a tree surgeon and have always wondered how much of an impact climbing and saw work during the day is impacting my running in the evening. The approach I’ve taken has been to be very conservative with progression and goals.

    Anonymous on #48289

    For more on this subject listen to the recent pod cast I did with Luke Nelson. We talked a lot about the fatiguing effects of work that, as Reed says, make you tired but not fitter. If you have any times during the day when you can get off your feet, elevate your legs, even for 10 min at a time this can help a lot. That and more active recovery like foam rolling and stretching. Can you get up extra early and do some training a few days a week before work. It’s easier to work with tired legs than to train after along hard day.


    joebla13 on #48294

    Thanks everyone!
    I have not had a chance to listen to that podcast yet and did not realize it touched on this topic(listened to the one with you’re 74 yr old friend 3 times). I have always thought of foam rolling as an injury treatment rather than a recovery method and will try to incorporate that more. I have found that a recovery ride on the road bike works wonders once you know how to do it. And hey, if Ed can do it then so can I right? 😉


    Emil on #48328

    More top level ultra runners who stand a lot – Geoff Roes, Karl Meltzer, Jeff Browning. While not dismissing Zone training, it is more of a cardiovascular model, which is only a part of the big ultra-endurance picture. So you may not be that much of at a disadvantage, and on the contrary 🙂 Bottom line, work with what you have.

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