In 2018, I ran 2 half marathons and 2 full marathons, followed so far in 2019 with another half and a 10K. Suffice it to say, I’m feeling a little burned out. I swore I would start focusing on strength in the new year. Weelllll…I did stick to this goal, but I also didn’t. I still managed to run 30 miles nearly every week (claiming I wasn’t really training for anything…right) leading up to a 10K I raced in March. It turned out to be a big PR, and I even won $40 in gift cards for placing, so I’m glad I did it. What I learned though, is that I have a hard time going into a race without some kind of goal…either a time, or a race plan, or some kind of “thing” I think I should be doing.
It occurred to me that maybe I am having trouble transitioning back to normal between training cycles. I ran 40+ miles a week last year for so long, I guess it is a hard habit to break? Ha. I suppose there are worse habits! That being said, it is important to have the downtime while maintaining fitness between goal races. I enjoy running and am finding it is hard to cut down for my own good. Going into the summer, I really need to regain some of the muscle strength and composition that marathoning caused me to lose. My trainer, Chris (Isotolp Fitness), warned me in 2017 that running this many miles will burn through muscle despite my best efforts. He also warned me just this past January that it would be hard to gain this muscle back, if I continued running so many miles. As it turns out, he was quite right. My hope for the rest of the spring and summer is to chill the F out. According to my definition, that would be running about twenty miles a week at most. This would allow me to still do what I love, which is run, while giving my body and mind a break, and time to focus on those other running goals, like strength training. This “chill out” period will also give me extra time to research new race options and decide what and when I want to race again!