Returning to Practice After the Holidays
When you return to practice after the holidays, approximately Jan. 1-2, after a rest of 10 to 12 days, you will transition to more specific training as you begin to implement more technical work to better learn and smooth out your skills.
As with any transition period, athletes want to be ready, refreshed, rested, and excited to go. These factors are both important for growing during this transition time, and maybe most importantly, for avoiding the potential risk of injuries that go hand-in-hand with any transition. Think back to when you were learning to drive a stick-shift automobile. Remember early on in your learning curve the rough transition from first gear to second gear as you engaged the clutch? The same goes for athletics transitions.
I've used the word “trust” before in previous articles I have written. The same trust is necessary here at holiday break time. All of the fitness you accomplished since early November doesn’t go anywhere with a short rest time now. I always gave my athletes three to four medium-level training ideas to do during the holiday break, but only if they felt like doing something. If they decided to rest the entire time, that was OK, too.
The training road from January until the Olympic Games begin in late July will be intense. Rest now while you can for these few days; it will give you the best opportunity for both mental and physical growth when you get back on the track after the New Year begins. That is what’s most important.