I think I have a love/hate relationship with recovery weeks.
I love them because it's a chance to rest and recover (yes, I know, my powers of deduction are simply sensational) but I hate them for two reasons: First, I can swear up and down that I am going to turn to mush during my recovery week. Mush. As in, lose all muscle and fitness I've gained. And if it's this bad during a recovery week, wait till I start to taper.
And the second reason I hate recovery weeks? My weekend long workouts are invariable crappy.
As a point of comparison, last week Speedy and I rode 38 miles, including lots of hills and some Speedy-induced sprints on the flats (Speedy, last weekend: "Hey...you gonna let that guy just pass you like that? You should totally go get him and show him what's up..."), followed by a short but hard run, and felt not too bad. Yesterday, we did 21 miles of flat roads, no brick run afterward, and I thought I was going to fall off the bike. It was so. freaking. hard. And since I'm really my own worst enemy (see point #1 above) (I don't need my competition to get in my head. I do it just fine by myself, thank you very much), the minute I have a bad workout I start thinking I'm getting slower.
Bad swim? Clearly all the work I've done in the pool is for naught, as I am slower than slow. Bad bike? Disregard the months of training I've put in, I'm clearly going to fall over going up the hills during my next race.
Recovery weeks might be good for my body, but they are seriously bad for my psyche.