Shortly after Bayshore, as I was riding a PR high, I posted my upcoming race schedule. Since I thought it was a “typical” summer racing schedule, I was a bit surprised that many of your comments were something along the lines of, “Wow, you are going to be busy.” Despite having run two marathons in 4 weeks, it never really occurred to me that it was a bit aggressive, especially since triathlons just don’t take the same kind of recovery that road races do.
But as the next three weeks went by, my body resisted running. All I wanted to do was hit the road, but my right hip/hamstring/glute had a different plan. Despite over a week completely off of running and only running about 15 miles a week for a few weeks, I still wasn’t feeling 100%. It wasn’t that I was hurting, it was just that it was there. It was tight and it was telling me to pay attention.
So as I got closer and closer to my next race, the Hamburg Half Marathon, I started to question whether it made sense for me to run. Even though I was only planning to run for “fun”, the fact that I hadn’t run more than 6 miles in 4 weeks made me hesitant.
Coach had already said he didn’t think it was a great idea, but since we don’t officially start our training together until July 9th, we didn’t continue to have discussion about it.
Fortunately I hadn’t paid yet, because I was struggling to decipher how to do it, so I felt like that gave me a bit more flexibility.
I had a fantastic deep-tissue massage and some great (tightness free) runs in the week leading up to the race, but I made the final decision not to run mid-week. Late nights, early mornings, lots of alcohol and work stress weren’t going to help the situation if I was already questioning what my body had to give.
I was at peace with the decision and looking forward to an easy 1 hour run Sunday morning, then cheering my colleague to a sub-1:20 with his wife and other friends.
Then Saturday night/Sunday morning I spent the entire night rotating between being curled up in the fetal position or in the bathroom with some kind of food poisoning or stomach bug. I was beyond grateful that I hadn’t planned to race this morning. It was all I could do to muster the energy to shower and get on the train to spectate. There was no way I could have run 1 mile, much less 13.1.
The fresh air felt good and it was nice not to feel like I was suffocating in my hotel room for an hour or so, but once we saw Tom finish (1:22…not his goal but still fantastic!), I was ready to head back to the hotel.
Now as I lay here, annoyed because I missed a run and swim today and because I am sick while away from home, I can’t help but think about how our bodies really are in charge. I am reminded over and over again that no matter what I WANT to do or what I think I CAN do, my body will revolt if I don’t treat it right. I destroyed my body this past week by combining jet lag with trying to maintain early morning workouts along with the late nights that often go along with business travel. I am certainly paying for it now. It really is not that much different than not allowing proper recovery, rest and doing all the stretching, rolling, etc. that keeps us healthy on the run.
My competitive side hates the idea that I DNS’d a race today, even if it wasn’t a goal race. But the whole situation is a good wake-up call to remind me to take care of my body so that it will perform when I ask it to.