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Returning to training after long but not too serious illness

I have been recently diagnosed with, and treated for, Giardia, which to cut a long story short is a tummy bug which causes the usual variety of tummy bug symptoms and chronic fatigue and lethargy. Also I have a low red blood cell count probably attributable to the 'bug'. Luckily my weight hasn't increased massively but my fitness is obviously a lot lower than I would like.

The fatigue and lethargy have lasted approx 6 months and within 7 days of treatment I actually feel like training again. So far so good. I have obviously lost my conditioning and am aware of 'too much too soon'. What I am after is some advice;

should I go right back to basics and calculate HR training zones?

Should I just get out and get my 'legs' back and not worry about any data/times?

Should I target one race late in the season to motivate or write off this year and do a very long gradual build up?

My natural inclination is such that I will have to be extremely guarded against pushing too hard. Would the employment of a coach be worth it to reign me in? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Chris J

ps - can I justify to my wife that a new bike would be motivation and not kleptomania?


  • jonEjonE Posts: 1,113
    From my own past experience I would keep the intensity low approx 65-70 % for all my training to build up a solid base and then if I felt strong enough try an interval session and see what my recovery rate was.It was better to miss a couple of sessions in the long run than ruin the rest of my season.

    You shouldn't write off the season,you don't have to race at max effort to gain benefit,completing a race at a lower intensity allows you to focus the mind,okay so fatter,unfit people may beat you in the results list but the race can be put down as training,trying new equipment out (bike,Wetsuit,etc) so that the race at the end of the season will be the best prepared one.All the best.
  • Chris JChris J Posts: 71
    Thanks Jon.

    I reckon about a month of low intensity "almost" training should give me a reasonable lead-in before I try anything more. I like the thought of using a race as a training milestone before targetting a race late in the season. Cheers.

    Chris J
  • Chris JChris J Posts: 71
    Thanks conehead et al

    Sine Fri I have completed one 40 minute swim lesson. Yesterday I went for a bike ride for pleasure; couldn't help looking at the watch though! Today I swam for 35 mins practicing the exercises given on Fri and this evening just been for a gentle trot. My chopsy grin is back and I feel great. I plan to follow this 'what I feel like, when I feel like it' routine until June and then reassess.

    I'm in the Oxford/Cheltenham/Swindon triangle so if anyone knows of any recommended coaches to reign me in I would be grateful.

    Thanks chaps for the advice and comments above.

    Chris J

  • godluvsatriergodluvsatrier Posts: 199

    im no expert on rehabilitative training but i was put out myself (just run training back then) about three years ago for a year and coming back to exercise of any intensity is hard but do it really regularly because there's one thing i noticed - it made me feel a lot better a lot quicker than I had been and in fact I put down my recovery almost entirely to exercise. Especially if you've had problems with lethargy I imagine.

    Good luck with your training!! x
  • Chris JChris J Posts: 71

    Thanks for your experiences. I am very aware of overdoing it so I reckon little (30-45 mins run, 60-70 mins bike and 30-40 mins swim) and often. One of these once a day and try to remember to stop whilst I feel I could do more.
  • godluvsatriergodluvsatrier Posts: 199
    yeah definitely!! Do a little bit every day. honestly it wil make you feel better. but your sessions look quite long. if you're going to do longer sessions dont go hard at all. its all down to how your body feels though.

    bet you're feeling brill in no time! x
  • godluvsatriergodluvsatrier Posts: 199
    oh forgot to say though major difference is when i say i did run training i mean minimal. before i was ill i had only just started getting into exercise so chances are you're a lot fitter to begin with than i was. so you can probably do a lot more than i did to begin with!!!
  • Chris JChris J Posts: 71
    I have not been able to get out today due to meetings and family stuff. Is it good or bad I now feel agitated? Enforced no training, my head tells me, may be good for me long term. However, it's a lovely evening and my trainers and bike shoes keep taunting me.
  • godluvsatriergodluvsatrier Posts: 199
    i think thats entirely normal! especially if you had planned to have a session. i reckon it must be similar to how drug addicts feel when they cant get their hit!
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