Over training tends to be one of the biggest factors leading to injury. In fact, it’s known to be the leading cause because it’s a such a stealthy and deceptive assailant. Fitness can be an addictive thing and for a lot of people “getting fit” is actually synonymous with pushing limits and moving beyond supposed physical and mental confines. And, that is true – to a point. When starting out, you do have to push yourself further than the day before, but it should be incremental and not all at once. The ultimate goal of being fit is getting to a place where you’re most comfortable with your level of fitness – a place where you can simply maintain and manage instead of constant pushing. For many addictive personalities, that place is never reached and they continue to push beyond what their bodies are actually capable of producing. This can lead to over-training and over-use and what is commonly known as repetitive stress injury. Focused on constant improvement, those seeking a fit lifestyle will often times mistake pain for simple soreness and then long-term injury ensues.
The Microsoft Health app and dashboard tries to help with this by providing a Recovery Time data point with each completed activity. It tells you, based on your activity output, how long you should wait before performing this activity again.
While useful, the unfortunate thing with the Microsoft Health Recovery Time is that the information is not currently activity cumulative – meaning if you perform multiple activities during the day (Run, follow a Guided Workout, etc.) it doesn’t provide an overall Recovery Time stat, it just gives you a Recovery Time for each specific activity. So, you’re left with having to figure it out for yourself.
The Recovery Time for Microsoft Health is based on industry recommendations for a normal subset of those striving to become more fit and if you follow the recommendations you should be safe. Those that read my fitness articles will know immediately that I’m not the best example to follow. I run every day. But, I’m not exactly normal. I’ve spent years constructing a running form that helps me remain injury free despite my age. I have developed a real sense of what I can and can’t do and listen to my body quite often. So, this is more of a ‘Do as I say and not as I do’ thing.
However, with the limitations of the Microsoft Health app and dashboard, because each body type is different, and everyone’s fitness levels are dissimilar, there has to be a way to determine when it’s time to take a rest. People tend to forget that rest and recovery is just as important to fitness training as the activities themselves.
A new Windows Phone app called TrainingDay? (yes, that question mark at the end is intentional) offers the opportunity to take some of the guesswork out whether or not you should train today, put in a moderate workout, or take the day off and recover. This is a great idea and highly recommended if you are one of those fitness addicts that has trouble deciding. The app is pretty basic right now and only measures your current hear rate. Measuring current heart rate is a fair factor, but its still going to be inconclusive and should be used with the Microsoft Health app and dashboard information for the ultimate decision. Its at least better than flipping a coin or consulting the Magic 8-Ball.
You can download it from here: TrainingDay?
TrainingDay? works with or without a Microsoft Band, but if you choose not to connect to a Microsoft Band (or you don’t own one – get one HERE) you have to enter information manually.