Naturally, it's more fun to write about great workouts, new PRs, and races that went well than it is to write about struggling with running. But that's what this post is about. I want to be transparent in this blog, so that you can see how normal it is to encounter bad running spells like the one I am encountering one right now.
I've continued to struggle with fatigue this past month after the St. George Marathon. I usually have a natural, barking chihuahua-like energy, even without coffee. The past few weeks, I have felt more like an English Bulldog. Even with reduced mileage and workouts, my running felt stale and I wanted to nap more than usual. I've also had a harder-than-usual time recovering from harder workouts, with lingering soreness.
The weekend before last, for example, I had a 10-mile long run scheduled – not very long when you're accustomed to running 16-22 miles coming down from marathon training. I was feeling so poorly that I was only able to squeak out 5 miles. I NEVER cut runs short, so for me to cut my run in half was significant and telling. I felt a bit better during the week and enjoyed a few zippy days. But my "by feel" track workout on Tuesday evening with my team last week – 4 x 200 and 4 x 400 - also felt sluggish. I was nowhere near the paces I am capable of running.
My diet is stellar right now, since I am doing the 21-Day Badass Adventure Cleanse so I don't think that's the cause. I am eating and drinking (via juice and smoothies) tons of leafy greens, which are high in iron as well as taking in tons of plant protein. This high alkaline-low acid way of eating is flooding my body with nutrients, and there's no deprivation involved: I am eating all I want.
Feelings are not logical
To be honest, the fatigue and my slower pace feels frustrating, especially since I am itching to run more. My intellect and the coach in me tells myself that these indicators are normal for the end of a hard, long training cycle. But feelings have no logic: you cannot reason them away or talk yourself out of feeling a certain way. Feel your feelings, let them go and move on.
The body is wise. This is simply my body's way of keeping me in check. For now, I am taking things day by day.
Luckily, I think things are on the upturn. Fingers crossed! The past week felt a bit better; hard sometimes but better. Although I felt tired, fatigue did not follow me around all day long like an annoying dark cloud. Most days, I felt well rested and I had a great long run (11 miles) on Saturday.
So what's the lesson in all this? Patience.
I like to think of running as a necklace, made up colorful beads of many different runs. Some beads are streamlined and sleek. Others may be cracked and scratched. But they all contribute to your necklace: your individual strength as a runner. I have said before that one run will not make or break you. Neither will one period of running poorly – IF you are wise enough to listen to your body and cut back instead of pushing harder.
Changes coming to this blog
I've been saying this for awhile but a heads up that changes are coming for this blog. I will still focus on running but will also be adding recipes, travel, environmentally friendly lifestyle posts – on other word, mo' better content. Moving a year-old blog to another platform and changing the name is a big job that's taking longer than I had hoped.
You should not experience any issues other than perhaps having to initially click on a different link. I will keep both sites live for awhile. If you are signed up for my newsletter, you should get it uninterrupted. Thanks for all your support, friends!