The two factor theory of training:
It’s really very simple, there are only two things involved in training; getting tired (many people are good at that), and getting fresh (other people are good at that). Not many people are good at getting tired and getting fresh, they either hammer themselves into the ground, or stay too fresh to improve. Now expanding the two factors:
You need to get tired through training, not from life (children, job, stress, etc.) So, we’re looking for the correct amount of the right type of tired, bearing in mind the limitations imposed by all that life stress. We also need to make sure that the correct energy systems are being trained to satisfy your goals. It’s no good doing lots of sprint training if your goal is a 24hr mountain bike race.
So often it’s the life stress that stops us freshening. We aren’t allowed to sit around and recover, there’s always something to be done. But, when you sit around – after a getting tired session – you are doing something, getting fitter! It just doesn’t look like it to the rest of the world. If you can’t get to sit down and relax you may be better going for a real recovery ride – short and so easy you don’t get your heart rate up. Or, go to the movies, remove yourself from the demands of life.