After I finish a race, I always get the question, “What’s next?” That’s okay, it’s a kind of logical question.
I had this great idea that I would make 2010 the “Year of the Half Marathon” and do a half every single month. Part of me wants to do another marathon, without needing stitches shortly into the event! Even better, I’ll tackle an ultramarathon… that will show the 26.2 who is the boss!
But the reality is that I need to slow down some. My body needs a little bit of a break.
The afternoon after the race (Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Half) I drove to Utah for work, sitting in the car after the race was great for my right hip. It was achy for a couple days after. Plus it was snowy and cold in Utah (-3° causes me physical and mental anguish). That was probably really good for my system that was trying to heal from running a race with a cold. I just kept getting sicker which developed into sinusitis/bronchitis and required antibiotics.
So I didn’t run for a little over a week post-race just trying to get myself feeling better. I’m just starting to see improvement, but I’m still not 100% and continue to cough and sniffle more than I’d prefer. I went for my first post-race run last night, 3.4 miles at Fleet Feet, and while I was a little nervous that it might be rough on my respiratory system, I felt great throughout the run. Better than great… it was therapeutic… physically I felt pretty good but the mental benefits were even stronger. I felt happier and more relaxed during and after the run than I’d felt for days.
I need to focus on taking better care of myself for a while. Yes, getting exercise is a good way to take care of yourself, to an extent. I am too much of a perfectionist and I will run myself into the ground to follow a race-specific training plan before cutting myself some slack. And perfectionism to that extreme isn’t just ambitious, it’s a flawed way of thinking and behaving.
So, what’s next? I’m going to run shorter distances for enjoyment and myself for the next short while, probably nothing longer than a 10K for a little bit. There’s a part of me that is dying a little inside at this plan, I want to run distances. I need a 5K to get warmed up for crying out loud!
But more than the immediate need for distance, I want to run for the rest of my life. And right now, my body needs me to take care of it better.
So Jill will still run… just not as far for a little while. That’s okay, right? 🙂