"Slow down, you move too fast. You got to make the morning last." Simon and Garfukel
This "in between" time is our RECHARGE time. It's a time to reconnect with ourselves. A time to reflect and appreciate what we've done. It is a time to just "BE" with ourselves, our family, and our present moments so that we don't get to the end of life and wonder where all of "it" went. This time allows us to absorb what we've just done, and reflect on what's next. For athletes, it is a time to let our body soak up rest and heal after working so hard. If we use this time wisely, then we will move on to to our next big goals and plans with a full battery and a clear mind. Ready to rock n' roll! But if we rush the lull or "in between" time that comes with the end of something big, then we might miss out on some of the essential rejuvenation that will allow us to be our best.
If you're like me, you might always be thinking of the "What's NEXT" even before you finish with "What's RIGHT NOW". The past few years of my life have been devoted to truly slowing myself down. I've worked hard at trying to be in the present with my kids, savor the "NOW" in life, and not be in such a rush to move on to the next thing. I've made a point to do this as a mother, a professional, and an athlete. It is important to me to not get SO wrapped up in setting goals, accomplishing new things, traveling to new places, and signing my kids up for new classes and activities that I miss out on really soaking up my present life. The future is important. Yes. Our goals help us to keep getting stronger. Yes. And our plans help smooth a path for us to keep moving forward and accomplishing our goals. But if we go too fast then we will miss out on some the scenery that might be harder to notice. Life will be a blur of "NEXTS" and we'll miss out on the "NOWS".
There has definitely been a bit of a lull in my life since Boston. It has been a time of rest and I've worked really hard at doing the things to help my body recover from injury and the damage that comes from running a marathon in extreme heat while not fully healed from injuries. The two weeks I had off from exercise was SO necessary. I don't think I really had much of a choice. My 33 year old body was BEAT UP. I'm so glad I took the time off.
So What's Next?
Yes, I'm looking forward to what's next for me as a runner. But I'm keeping it slow. I know that I would like to have the option to run Boston again next year. I have several friends who will be there and honestly, I had so much fun this year that I'd love to be back there! It would also be nice to try it again without the extreme heat. What are the chances of that kind of heat two years in a row?
So, I have until September to get a safe BQ in the bag. Ideally, training for another marathon so close to the one I just ran might not be considered optimal training. However, my coach has agreed to make a plan for me so that I can race another marathon safely and build off of some of the Boston base that I already have. IF. IF my body says "Yes" then I will slowly move forward and plan for another marathon in next few months (I have a few in mind). However, my body might very well tell me that it isn't ready. I'm making a point of listening intently to my body.
Why the caution??
Under normal circumstances, an almost 4 hour marathon would leave me feeling like I could easily run another marathon pretty soon afterwards. In fact, last year after my June Marathon in Newport, Oregon (3:30), I ran another marathon 4 weeks later since I had such a crummy experience at my June race. That second one ended up being fun and faster than the one I had trained for (3:24). However, since January, I have been nursing some strains in my upper hammy/abdominal muscles that have caused me some pain and really just been annoying! I'm starting to wonder if the problem isn't actually in my hamstring at all but more in my butt. This would make a lot of sense as to why my pelvic region was hurting too...seems as if it is all connected (as are most issues with our body). So, my steps in proceeding with training but also using caution and listening to my body:
- Starting slow. My coach has me starting back very gradually. He has started working on a plan that is just for me and he has taken my injuries and past training into account. This week is only 25 miles and all miles no faster than 9 min pace.
- Rolling, heat, icing, adjustments, LOVE LOVE LOVE my body.
- Thinking positive and realistically.
- I only have ONE body and I want to run for years to come. I want to be that grandma that runs half marathons with her daughters and even grandkids. If I want to run for years to come then I have to take care of my body now. I will be moving forward here but if my body isn't ready than I will slow down again and perhaps not run another marathon until next year.
Finally, A Rolling Technique that WORKS for my BUTT!
My roller has never made much sense to me when it comes to rolling out this butt/top of hammy. But I never considered putting it somewhere besides the stupid floor. So, the video below demonstrates how I will be sitting A TON in the next few weeks.
Also, a giveaway and post about NUUN coming soon. In the meantime, I have a code for you so that you can get 15% off! Yippie!
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1. Do you use your roller on chairs? Am I the only one that is new to this rolling technique??
2. Do you find it hard to rest and just "BE" for an extended time after you've just finished accomplishing a big goal like a marathon? Or do you find yourself moving right on to the next thing without taking time to rest, recover, and reflect?