• COVID and the Endurance Athlete – Part I

    What happens after an endurance athlete gets COVID-19?

    How long does it take to recover? Do endurance athletes recover faster from COVID that non-athletes? When should they begin training again? What should training look like? When can they plan on the first race post-COVID? The questions go on and on…

    While questions go on and on, answers are not clear-cut and easy to find because we are still trying to figure out the path forward from the COVID pandemic. Of course people do not want to jeopardize long-term health by starting to train too soon. At the same time, how much time should be spent on the couch doing nothing?

    As I write this column, there are a reported 606,000 COVID deaths in the United States. There are horrifying stories of long-term health damage after COVID and the symptoms suffered by the long-haulers. And, there are some stories of people recovering quickly using protocols not widely advertised.

    The virus is a long way from being completely under control and more than likely you or someone you know will get the virus.

    Certainly there are endurance athletes that have recovered from COVID and have returned to training and racing. What did they do to recover? How long did it take them to feel normal again?

    Lots and lots of good questions.

    In my coaching practice, I have had two athletes test positive for COVID-10. One person got the virus early in 2020 and didn’t know his two hospitalizations and neurological symptoms were caused by the virus until later when he tested positive for the antibodies. His wife also tested positive for the antibodies and had no symptoms of the virus. None.

    The second athlete tested positive just about a week ago. While I have my own opinion on what the post-COVID workouts and “training recovery” should look like, based on my past experiences, I wanted to see what others have done. There is no published information that I could find.  

    And so the series will begin. I will write about the experiences of the athletes I coach and other endurance athletes I know who have traveled the road to COVID recovery, or are on that road now. The COVID blogs may not be weekly, but as I find information I will share it with you and keep track of the series by designating Parts.

    Looking forward to an interesting journey ~

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