Having just come off two days with reasonably hard rides, and being in a position where I want/need to ride every day (staving off the black dog which is being particularly aggressive at the moment), doing the 'recovery ride' thing is suddenly important - I need to exercise every day, not just take a day off.
Soooo, I did some research on recovery rides. I've got a HRM which I recognise isn't essential (let's not get into that argument again) but it's a tool that 's there so I'd be daft not to use it. I fired up Polar's website and had a look at their recomendations and, based on my max heart rate of 185 (observed in the field, it's pretty close), for a recovery ride, I need to keep my HR below 110
110? I work harder than that buttering my toast in the morning.
I'll be cruising along the beach front - dead flat though knowing my luck, I'll have a head wind on the return leg. I don't regularly ride that route so just 'back off a few km/hr' doesn't mean a real lot, I rarely ride on the flat anyway. Like most of us, I'm more likely to go too hard than too gentle. No, I won't be taking the Europa, I'll be riding the Jamis which has all them lovely gears ... hmm, 26x32 gearing on the dead flat with a tail wind, THAT'd be easy riding
The premise is:
I intend to ride every day so the recovery ride is important ... but knowing me I'll probably take one day a week off through sheer laziness and attacks of common sense.
I have a HRM so it makes sense to at least wear the chest strap. My max HR is 185.
The ride will be dead flat.
What strategy do you suggest for a recovery ride? Something that'll do all the mythical things these rides are supposed to do like clean out the system, get the blood flowing, help muscle repair, convince my lady that I've finally gone irretrievably mad.
Distance? Or time?
HR to aim for or maintain?
How many stops for coffee and pie?