It happens to everyone: Weekend Warriors, novice riders, seasoned amateurs, world champions. At some point, for some reason, you will miss a workout.
While this can cause Stress and anguish for many, the first step is acceptance, accepting that you are not getting those efforts completed today. All you have to move forward towards your goal is the work you can put in tomorrow.
The real question becomes, what SHOULD I do tomorrow?
And the answer to that is entirely dependent on WHY you missed today’s workout int he first place.
Most people in the world don’t spend their free time riding bikes, so “why” you didn’t ride your bike today requires honest self-reflection. Ran out of time? Did work get out of hand? Family duty called you away? Are you sick? Fatigued? Just feel off?
The reason WHY you missed that workout is the most crucial question you need to answer honestly before plotting your next training session,
Training is a form of Stress you put your body through. With appropriate recovery, your body adapts to that Stress to better handle it in the future. That is the essence of training.
Stress -> Rest -> Adaptation -> Repeat
There are many types of Stress for your body to encounter, both physical and mental. Unfortunately, your body does not divide these stressors into two distinct pools.
Given that adaptation comes from Stress + Rest, you cannot adapt to physical Stress (training) and become fitter while if your mental Stress is also peaked.
So WHY did you miss that workout?
If the answer has anything to do with Stress/Fatigue/Energy, you cannot do your missed workout tomorrow. If anything, you need to ensure that tomorrow’s focus is reducing that nonphysical stress as much as possible.
The last thing you should do in these situations is “beat yourself up” about a missed workout and add further stress to your system.
What you should focus on is getting a good night’s sleep and shifting your focus to the next hard workout, not dwell on the one you just “missed”.
Yes, consistency is the most important factor in training. That does not mean you have to ride every single day (nor should you). What consistent training means is getting in the majority of what you have on the schedule. A single(or even a few) missed session will not obliterate the consistent work of the previous weeks. In some cases, like when you are sick, missing a workout and focusing on rest and recovery will actually make you faster in the long run.