Ever feel sad when a big race is over? Join the club.
I often find myself in a ‘post-race funk’ after a big race. It must be because big races, like the Boston Marathon, always seem like they are taking forever to get here, then all of a sudden it’s all over in the blink of an eye. I like to think of this as the ‘post-race blues.’ It’s almost like I’m mourning the race that I was looking forward to for the longest time. Perhaps what added to the blues post Boston Marathon is all of the hype leading up to this year and how special this year’s race was for everyone that was involved.
From what I have read online, this is actually a real thing, that happens with both runners and triathletes. I can only imagine how I’m going to feel in August when my Ironman is over!
From Triathlete magazine: Post-race depression, or the “Ironman blues” as it’s commonly referred to in our sport, is a very real epidemic. You’ve spent months training. Every minute is planned for optimum performance, every calorie is counted to properly fuel your body, and every spare moment is used to recover and visualize the race ahead. Then, almost immediately after crossing the finish line, you come down with a physical and mental case of the mopes.
Read more here.
The days following the marathon, I felt like my head was in a cloud. I had just experienced this AMAZING day and now it had all come to an end. While I am excited for triathlon season, there is just something about the Boston Marathon that puts it on a pedestal, it’s unlike any other race. It probably didn’t help that I was really tired and my appetite was all thrown off for about 48 hours post marathon.
Despite feeling the ‘blues’, last week it was nice to physically (and mentally) take a break from training. Although I am not one to like rest, after running 26.2 miles on Monday, I NEEDED the rest. The night of the marathon, I slept for 12 hours! I have not slept that much in probably years… obviously my body was telling me something. My Triathlon coach instructed me to do NOTHING all week, expect for maybe some light and short bike riding and swimming. I was fine with this because Boston left me feeling pretty beat up until Thursday. As I explained in my recap, it’s the downhill’s that get you at Boston and my quads felt delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) until Wednesday/Thursday. I returned to work later in the week and it was really hard to focus. I was still getting that high from the marathon, but yet I was confined to a cubicle. My head was in a fog and my legs were still tired. I don’t work with runners, so no one really understood what I was going through… they were just amazed that I ran 26.2 miles:)
I basically took all of last week off and just enjoyed my rest… knowing that there is a LONG road ahead to my Ironman in August. I tried to step back for a minute while recovering, just to enjoy all of my free time. Free time will be hard to come by for about 16 more weeks or so.
Now I am definitely feeling the ‘racing itch’ one week after Boston. My first race isn’t until June (Half Ironman) and I want to race in May! Tis the season, right? I hope to add a race in May, either a half marathon or sprint triathlon, we shall see. Last week I received my official ‘Ironman Mont Tremblant’ training plan from my coach (it’s really happening!). Even though I’ve been swimming, biking and running for months now, it’s still crazy to see the last day of my current plan as the actual Ironman race! Excited for the road ahead!
Curious to hear how you deal with post-race blues? Feel free to share some tips!