Back in February, I talked about long-term and short-term goals. One of my long-term goals was to break my personal record in the AJC Peachtree Road Race. Yesterday was the 49th annual AJC Peachtree Road Race and I was unable to run. Running is a good metaphor for life, and sometimes things don’t go as planned.
Up until about 2 weeks, my training was going great. I remember thinking during a workout that I felt unstoppable (don’t you love those runs?). It all came to a halt though when a week ago, I woke up with the works (body aches and fatigue). The husband was out of town and with 3 kids the world doesn’t stop for Mom. So I got up and made an extra strong coffee and carried on with my day. On my run, I got worse and instead of continuing I cut it short.
I’ve learned in my 25 years of running that training through illness is not a good idea. A rule I generally follow when sick is if it’s above the head, a runny nose, cold, etc., it’s okay to run easy. If it’s the full body and a fever, I rest as long as my body needs to recover. Then, it’s best to ease back into it again SLOWLY. Long story short I had to get on the dreaded antibiotics and rest this week.
I use to be the type of athlete that would push my body regardless of how I felt. If I had a race or a hard workout on the schedule, I would do it regardless. This lead to extra days off when a couple days would have been just fine. I may have gotten away with it sometimes in the past but as I get older and have a more demanding schedule like caring for my children, and work, I am more loving to my body. I value rest and schedule it in the training plan. When sickness pops up, it’s my body telling me to slow down. Instead of ignoring the way my body feels I’ve learned to use it as a tool for training.
As I was watching the coverage of Peachtree yesterday, I felt a bit sad I wasn’t running and questioned if I should have just gone for it. Then I remembered how I’ve been feeling and I’m thankful I got to wake up with my family and have the energy to enjoy the 4th of July festivities.
Just take it one step at a time and know that these little bumps come and go.
Go with the flow of life!