Recovery is a massive part of the training, but often forget or underrated. Lack of the rest and recovery could lead injuries, tiredness, bad workouts, weight loss, dehydration, etc. The amount of your weekly recovery depends on your training amount and fitness level.
You have might have seen runners who have two rest days during the week and runners who have none of them. Runners who have more rest during to week have often lower weekly mileage and are less fit. And then there are runners who don’t have any rest days during the week, they might have couple during the month. These runners weekly running amount are often high. So why they don’t spend rest day as they are training so much? They much feel tired and sore?
Having none rest day doesn’t mean that these runners training hard every single day. They have recovery days, which means that they have easy short run. When your running load is high, your body gets used to it, and taking the break might feel weird. If you take a whole day without training, you might feel that you have lost the touch of running and next day training might feel a little bit off.
Taking the rest day is okay if you are not running much during the week. It’s also depends on your goals, if you want to run under 3 hours marathon, it almost impossible by training 3 to 4 times a week.
There are also difference between rest and recovery days. Rest day means that you are just rest, there are not any physical activities and recovery days again means that you are doing light physical activity just as some runners do their easy run or jog. Light activity can help repair ripped muscle fibers which occurs during exercise.
How to know which day you should spend? Even if, your weekly mileage is low and you take more than one rest day during the week, try to switch one of them to recovery day. It doesn’t mean that you have to go to jog or easy run, it can be something else for example cycling, or stretching. It doesn’t matter what is your fitness level or training amount, don’t forget to listen to your body, only you can say how’s your body feeling. If you need to rest, then rest.