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Building Back On The Bike After Having Covid 19

Well like most people after avoiding Covid 19 for the last 2 years it finally got the better of me. Our son had it a couple of months back which we avoided but then 1 month later both my daughters tested positive. So myself and my wife Kate finally got it.

Like most athletes this winter I’d built up some great fitness and was frustrated it finally got the better of me .

But knowing there was nothing I could do I built a training plan to build back nice and steady and start to build in an action plan to do so. I have some massive goals this year but most of these won’t be until the middle of the season, so reflecting, it could not of happened at a better time if there is one! Just means I’m not going to start the season in the form I was hoping for.

I also think it’s given me some time to reflect and realise I was burning the candle at both ends with early mornings , training , full days of 10-12 hrs of work most days, I'd also been neglecting my sleep. So it’s definitely something I will be trying to keep on top of but also making sure the quality of sleep is good.

It’s never great getting sick but that’s when having a cycling coach can really help with an action plan. I always follow the advice of my Coach Bob Tobin and we went over an action plan to build back over the next few months . I’m not very good if I don’t have a clear direction . So it’s been great to start the process of building my body back.

This is a short diary of how from testing positive the first two weeks went,

Day1 -Tested positive. Lack of energy

,head cold & aching muscles.

Day 2,3&4 - still carrying head cold . Sinuses flared up really bad tooth ache .

Day 5 - Felt much better today tested negative today of lateral Flow. Still have a slight head cold but aches have gone.

Day 6 - Tested negative again. Did some light stretching just to get the body moving.

Day - 7 started back to work . Feeling very tired.

Day 8 - Rested - Hr has started to come down . Much more energy.

Day - 9 - 13 started back training . Started off with 30 mins very light training . Literally I just turned the pedals 80-100 watts . Then each day I started to lift the duration by 10 mins . Comparing hr to power . I just kept the hr below 130 for myself and the watts gradually increased each day . I definitely noticed a slight shortness in breathing and could tell I did not have full lung function. It almost felt I had 3/4 lung capacity.

Day 14 - I was up to 1hr 30 mins and started to feel much stronger . Hr to power was much better and I was recovering much better from each days training.

From day 14 onwards - We then started to progress training doing some Level 3 blocks . What I’ve been seeing is once I start to climb it’s a bit harder to recover but I would expect that with the fitness loss. I’m building back each day and trying to do all the small things right with sleeping and recovery.

It was good after having had Covid and building back slowly to get away for a family break in Cornwall and ride my bike and enjoy it. The first couple of days I found it harder as these were 1.5 - 2 hour rides so slightly longer which aren’t usually an issue but I could feel it took more out of me. By the end of the week though I felt so much better, it was like my body adjusting to it again it felt really good.

It’s now 5 weeks since having it and I finally feel like myself again on the bike which is a great feeling to have and looking forward to my goals this season.

It’s very easy to under estimate how Covid will make you feel especially as for me I didn’t have a bad case of it, mild symptoms compared to many others. However, it has still took its toll on me and glad that I have took my time to rest, recover and build back slowly. Having my coaches support and advice has been crucial through this time. So if you have a coach and have/ had Covid and now starting back training really take their advice and build back slowly so that you don’t do too much too soon and keep setting yourself backwards.


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