Fatigued legs during recovery week

  • Creator
  • #84893

    Hey all,

    I was wondering if it is normal for your legs to feel exceptionally heavy, stiff and sort of dead during recovery week? I’ve been doing some recovery jogs and they feel very tough. I’m curious if this is a normal reaction while your body is absorbing the load?

    For context, I’ve been training regularly using Mike Foote’s plan, for the past couple of months and feeling really strong. I just finished a pretty heavy 3 week block, that included quite a bit of muscular endurance work with steady volume. My legs were regularly feeling pretty tired throughout this block (as I think they should?), but overall I felt I kept a good balance of taking a few lighter days as well.

    The last 3 days of the block were exceptionally hard, and the last day in particular I felt like my legs were completely drained at the end of it. Again, I wasn’t overly concerned since it was the last day of a heavy training block and I was excited to go into recovery mode and let them recover.

    Here’s my recovery week so far:
    Day 1: off completely: rolling and massaging
    Day 2: 30 min of light xcountry skiing: tired and tough
    Day 3: 40 min flat recovery jog: legs feel very heavy and tight calves
    Day 4: 50 min light xcountry ski and 30 min of yoga
    Day 5: 1 hr of recovery trail run, walking the uphills: Again feeling very tired and legs feel super heavy. They do start to feel a bit better at the end of the run.

    I’m concerned I pushed too hard and my legs need more time to recover. Or is the stiffness and soreness a normal sign the body is repairing itself?

  • Participant
    llaurent2006 on #84914

    Hi Pinekiwi,

    Personnaly I think you’re pushing too hard. I followed the same plan and I always felt good at the end of recovery week. L

    Jane Mackay on #84915

    Pinekiwi, it sounds like you’re underrecovered, which is the inverse way of saying what llaurent2006 said, that you’ve been pushing harder than your body can cope with at this point. You mentioned you just finished a tough block with a lot of ME, right after a phase in which you’ve been “feeling really strong”. Paradoxically, feeling really strong can be a sign that your body has reached a peak and you’re on the edge of pushing too hard. My suggestion would be to do another recovery week or maybe repeat week 1 of the programme — but really pay attention to how your legs and your system overall are feeling. Also other indicators: are you sleeping well? Have your moods changed?

    Let us know how it goes.

    Jane Mackay on #84916

    If you have access to a place to swim, swimming is a fantastic recovery excecise for the legs, because it’s weightless and the legs are horizontal, and also the pressure of the water.

    pinekiwi on #84924

    Thanks for the feedback. Maybe not what I wanted to hear but perhaps what I needed to hear.

    When I said I was feeling strong, I mostly meant I was feeling my body was absorbing the load, I was sleeping well and while the legs felt tired, they refreshed after an easy day.

    I guess the weird part for me is that all the symptoms (dead legs, low energy, poor sleep), suddenly appeared during the recovery week, when I was drastically reducing my training load. They were not really there during the training block. Is that a normal part of recovery or a sign I pushed too hard?

    I went on a longerish run on Saturday (as part of the plan, 40% of the weekly volume, which was 50% reduced volume of the week before) and felt really good again and fresh.

    Jane Mackay on #84932

    Great that you’re feeling fresh again.
    Maybe the sudden drop was caused by the final week of that block pushing you over the edge, or maybe it was ‘vacation syndrome’ — when you get sick the day you go on vacation because the body knows it can now relax and do all the repair and restoration that’s needed.
    In any case, great news that the load now seems to have been absorbed.

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