The Great Infestation

October 4, 2010 at 9:45 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 6 Comments
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Training Calls For: Rest 🙂

Miles Run So Far: 244.2

Days Left: 13

So I left you hanging with a picture of a disgusting bed bug and the promise of telling you what has recently infested my house.  Well, here’s a real picture clue.  Ready for it?

Fatigue.  We now basically always feel as good as we look in these pics (circa 15 mile run — August??).

Like a pest that creeps into your house at night and you suddenly wake up surrounded — fatigue is everywhere.  Lately it seems like Sam and I are both dragging all the time.  We’re balancing a lot, which isn’t anything new to us, but on top of everything (work, school, running, caring for the monsters, tending to our house, living life) — I think we’re both ready for marathon training to be over.

That’s right — we’ve reached that point.

Let’s do tha dang thang.

It’s not hard to understand why we’re fatigued from training when you consider we’ve been training continuously for the past 16 weeks and really, since January when we started half marathon training.  That’s more than 10 months of following one piece of paper or another printed off Hal Higdon’s website.

That’s an awful lot of mornings when you wake up and say, “how many miles do I have to run today?”

This is where it gets honest (for me — I can’t speak for Sam): I’m kind of tired of running.

There.  I said it.

Does that make me a bad person for admitting I could definitely go for more than just a random rest day here or there but an actual string of days without a 5 or 6 mile jog?  Or that I could really use a day where I’m the one who determines how far I’ll run and whether I’ll worry about my pace?

No.  It makes me human.

With any long term goal or project, you’re bound to run into the point where you either want it to be over already or you want to quit.  I don’t want to quit — I’m too close (13 days?!?!?!) to do that.  But I am itching to get to the starting line so I can get to that finish line.  Make sense?

The best way to combat fatigue is to listen to yourself and focus on other things which give you joy and pleasure until you can restore that sense of happiness in the task that is causing you fatigue. Don’t let it drag you down.

Example 1:

A lovely dinner out to celebrate our anniversary.  On Saturday, I made a conscious effort not to dwell on the 12 miles we were running that day.  I didn’t want to mentally fatigue myself over it.  Instead, I made the star of the show that day our fancy dinner out and some quality time together.  That’s what I was looking forward to all day. The 12 mile run was just something on my to-do list — it wasn’t my entire to-do list.  P.S. It was a great run, probably because I didn’t assign it so much importance.

Example 2:

A fun breakfast.  On mornings when I’m running more than 4 miles (read = preparing to burn more than 400 calories during a run), I make sure I fuel up with a carb-y breakfast with some healthy fat and staying power.  It’s almost always an English muffin with PB and maybe a banana (depending on the length of the run).  I am tired of English muffins (no offense to the British ;)).  I am tired of pulling out the toaster first thing in the morning.  I am dangerously close to being sick of PB — this is an emergency, people!  I need a break.

My standard breakfast is easy and takes 2 minutes, but in a way, it’s causing me fatigue, so I chose to go with something more fun.  Something I could really enjoy.

“Hey That Tastes Like Pumpkin Pie”  Oatmeal

🙂 1/3 cup each of: Trader Joe’s Quick Cook Steel Cut Oats, Light Vanilla Soymilk, Water and Canned Libby’s Pumpkin

🙂 1/2 tsp ground All Spice

🙂 1/2 tsp of Cinnamon

🙂 Brown sugar and chopped walnuts for sprinkling

Combine, heat, sprinkle with brown sugar and chopped walnuts.  Close eyes.  Imagine Thanksgiving.  Pass the turkey leg.  Yuuuuum.

A little extra time this morning and I don’t feel like I’m stuck in the same breakfast rut that relates to the same fatiguing running rut.

I can already feel the tides turning.  I think tomorrow’s 4 miler will be fabulous, re-affirming in fact!  All because I took a little time to stop focusing on fatigue and give myself a little boost with other happy activities.

Remember: fatigue is an infestation, but joy is contagious.  One can chase away the other — just make sure it’s the right one. 🙂

How do you handle fatigue?


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  1. I so understand the whole “sick of running” feeling. After the marathon, take a break, and then you will feel right as rain!

  2. I hear ya on the “lets get it over with already” syndrome! 🙂 I’m right there with you girly! I think the best way to deal with the fatigue is allow yourself an extra day of rest. Right now you are taper anyways, so an extra day of rest can only help. I would also try to something special for youself. Take a hot bath, schedule a pedicure for after the marathon…etc. Take is easy, you are almost to the big day!

  3. What’s ALL SPICE? I’ve never heard of that 😉

    • Ha — I had to look it up! I thought it was a combination of nutmeg, cinnamon and ginger…but Wikipedia proved me wrong!
      It tastes like all the pumpkin pie spices…or you could just use actual pumpkin pie spice. 🙂

      • Thanks! Sounds yummy. I think they could’ve come up with a better name though!

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