Those signals are not just vague, unimportant feelings that have no bearing on how we feel. They are valuable information about what is the best course of action. Matt brings together the most recent research explaining why we might be feeling a certain way at a specific time and what that feeling might be trying to tell us about our training. Thinking back to my best races and my most consistent training blocks, I can honestly say that I have thrown out the book, so to speak. There were times when I was completely dependent upon measuring everything. I lived by a heart rate monitor. I measured every course I ran, and I never backed off when my body told me I was tired. As Matt acknowledges, all of those tools can be very useful, and at times they are essential to knowing exactly where you are in training. But when they take priority over what your body is telling you, injury and overtraining are just around the corner. If I had always followed the signals my body was giving me the way Matt instructs, I believe I could have avoided most of the injuries and bouts of overtraining I have had in my career. The signs were obvious before I broke the 5,000 m American record and before I won a bronze medal at the World Half-Marathon Championships: I was listening to my body and following my intuition in training on a daily basis, and when I got to the start line, my confidence was unmatched.
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