Once I got back to Boston last week, and the half marathon was over I got a a really weird feeling. You know, that feeling you get when the holidays end, when you went back to school after prom or on the flight home from an incredible vacation. I can’t believe it’s all over. Now what? It’s an odd thing going from running nearly every day, plus long runs on the weekends to nothing. And I have to admit, now that I’m not training for anything I haven’t been very good about keeping up with my exercise, let alone running.
The other day, I decided I’d end this mood I was experiencing. Even though I knew I wasn’t quite ready to run again, I laced up my sneakers and hit the gym. After a light cardio workout on the elliptical, I hopped on the big, bad treadmill. I ran a mile and ran it fast. Then it hit me: my right shin / knee were in major pain. I had to stop, and at first felt defeated in a way. Last week I ran 13.1 miles, and now I can barely do 1? I was angry.
But rather than throwing myself a pity party, I realized it’s because my body isn’t quite ready to run. That doesn’t mean I’m not strong, powerful and healthy; it’s just a minor set-back. So I shrugged it off and hit the weights. It actually felt amazing to take a little break from running and really focus on my strength training for once. Not to mention that arm definition I noticed in the mirror while doing my lat pulldowns. Damn. Guess all that running paid off.
So the moral of the story is that you don’t have to feel bad when you realize you need a little time…you need a little break. Whether you’re taking a break from running to get your knee back in shape, or aren’t quite ready to give up late-night sweets, or need a little extra time to complete a project at work, you don’t need to feel guilty about it. You will achieve and accomplish these little goals when YOU (and your body) are ready to!
I’m about to go for a long walk outside. Yes, a walk not a run. And I’m totally OK with it! It’s 60 degrees out & I can’t wait to soak it all up…
Have you ever got down on yourself for giving your body a break, or giving yourself a little more time than you thought needed? How did you cope with it? Have a lovely day and enjoy the sun!