1. You need to figure out what works for you. 3:1 work:recovery weeks is one method. I use 2:1. There are very few training maxims written in stone, largely because individual variation is a huge factor. If 3:1 is working for you, great. If not, try 2:1.
2a. The volume of zone 2 training again depends on individual variation. If you have ADS, then zone 2 probably feels pretty easy. For pros, zone 2 feels damn hard because it’s so fast.
2b. Don’t be afraid to go slower. Zone 1 is valid, valuable work too. It sounds like your bumping into the life constraints that are specific to you. As Scott suggested, trade some zone 2 for more zone 1.
3a. Sure, it may be a rest for your legs, but it’s not a rest for your mind. Chronic training is a (welcome) form of chronic stress. Complete breaks are key. I also think that there are systems that we can’t measure or perceive that need these complete rest periods to recharge. Take a couple complete rest days, and then see how it affects the training that follows. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
As an ex-alpine climber myself, I’ve noticed something: the headspace that makes alpine climbers successful often makes them shitty athletes.
The all-or-nothing, drive-myself-into-the-dirt, I-can-take-the-pain attitude is good to have when you need it (on the goal climb or in key moments of a race). But outside of that, bringing that attitude to your training on a daily basis will make you LESS FIT in the long-term, not more.
The aerobic dirt naps that alpine-climber-wanna-be-athletes inflict on themselves wastes a huge amount of training time and effort.
I’ve done this myself so much it’s embarrassing. I’d be a lot fitter today if I had played the last five years a lot smarter. Don’t make the same mistake.
Training makes you weak. Rest makes you strong.