Recovery is a very important component when training for any endurance event. The amount of time it takes to recover depends on the individual and the event they are training for. When people don't properly recover, they often find themselves injured or overtrained. For this vary reason, if I find myself tired, I take a nap...time of day doesn't matter. I figure if I lay down and sleep for a couple of hours, I obviously needed it or I wouldn't have slept as long as I did.
I have one of the best napping partners anyone could ask for. She is black and hairy, has four legs, weighs about 55 pounds and produces lots of body heat. She curls up next to me and just wants to cuddle while she sleeps. We call her "Mara," short for Marathon.
We can learn a lot about recovery from a dog...after a run, Mara wants a sweaty leg, food, water, and a nap (usually in that order). Dogs know what their bodies need for recovery...after all, they are the best nappers I have ever seen. We should watch and learn from them and then do what they do.
Not only does Mara consume salty sweat, eat, drink and take naps, but she loves to get a "massage" at anytime of the day. We should probably take note and schedule weekly massages. After all, most of the elites have about 3-4 massages per week. Why shouldn't we get them too?
Moral of this story...learn how to recover from doing what a dog does and you will recover just fine!!