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The body doesn’t always want what the mind wants.

Well you see, I thought my body would be ready for this, but now I’m not so sure.

I’m talking about the Marathon I signed up to race, which is in 10 days.

It’s been a little over two months since Ironman Mont Tremblant, and while my mind thinks I’m recovered, my body feels a little differently. I tend to forget what a BIG deal racing an Ironman is. I think often I get caught up in my little ‘triathlon bubble’ and I honestly forget that what I accomplished is HUGE and my body went through A LOT to get to get to that finish line. Also, reading social media and blogs about people doing multiple Marathons and Ironmans in one year, makes me think that this is OK for me too… but is it really?

IRONMAN 225

Before signing up for the Manchester City Marathon, I made sure to get my coach’s approval. He said racing a Fall marathon would be totally fine and even mentioned it would be a great idea (and I thought, why the heck not!) it’s just a marathon after all? You see, it’s funny, after doing an Ironman, a Marathon in my eyes went from a MARATHON to, just a marathon. What used seem like a big deal in my mind, no longer did… it seemed, well, easier. We all know that the body does not always match up with what the mind thinks or wants. Sure I WANT to do this Marathon, but does my BODY want to do this Marathon. Does my left knee want to do this Marathon? Does my left TFL want to do this Marathon? If my left knee and my left TFL could speak up, they would tell me to give them a break. I know that for a fact.

Listen to your inner wisdom, the messages of your soul will guide you perfectly. #SavortheSeasons www.julielichty.com

Let me recap for a second here. I raced IMMT on August 17th. I took about two FULL weeks off, except for VERY light biking, swimming, and minimal running. By the third week post IMMT, I was started to introduce more running and workouts were a little more than recovery workouts. By the fourth week post Ironman, I started my training plan for the Manchester City Marathon. Over these last several weeks, I’ve trained A LOT, I’ve ran A LOT of miles (up to 48 miles in one week). I’ve been swimming, biking and running, basically like I did during the peak weeks leading up to my Ironman. Well not exactly, but pretty close. What felt really good at first, i.e. training again at a high level intensity, isn’t feeling so great now. It’s just not as fun. My body is tired with a capital “T” and I think it just needs (gasp) a BREAK.

IRONMAN 404

So often we got caught up in what we ‘want’ to do versus what we really ‘should’ do. Today, when my massage therapist asked me, “why are you doing the Manchester Marathon?” I did not have a valid answer. I seriously could not come up with a logical reason as to why I’m planning to run this race. I signed up for it when I was suffering from Post- Ironman Blues. I was coming off of the biggest race of my life, I was bored, sad, needing a goal. If I could fast forward to how I feel now about this race, I wouldn’t have even signed up in the first place. For the first time in my life as an athlete, I’m not wanting to push it and I’m really not wanting to push THROUGH the pain. For the first time I am LISTENING to this body of mine. I have already qualified and registered for the 2015 Boston Marathon and I know that takes a HUGE toll on my body. I was injured with Plantar Fasciitis last winter and missed FIVE weeks of running during training. It’s because I ran the Chicago Marathon in October when my foot hurt… and then it just got worse and worse. Now coming off of the Ironman, my body needs rest more than ever and it’s speaking up… and I think it’s time to listen.

IT IS TIME TO REST ~ "It is an ever living battle to remind myself that I am enough, you are enough…we have done enough, we have enough, we will always have enough…we know enough……etc……….that ENOUGH BATTLE is the one that never lets us rest" Melody via her BraveGirlsClub blog entry: ….rest is not weakness…..

This being said, I have decided to forgo the full marathon, and just do the half marathon on that same day. I also have thoughts about not racing all together, but I’m not quite at that point yet. I’m waiting to hear from my coach. I’ve trained to race and I want to do SOMETHING. I just want to do what’s SMART, not reckless.

I got my knee looked at yesterday, since it’s been sore when running long distances. Luckily, it’s nothing serious, yet.  It’s attributed to overuse i.e. the famous last words. When I told me Orthopedic doctor I am planning to run a Marathon after racing in an Ironman two months ago, his eyes bugged out of his head. Instantly, he said it wasn’t a good idea.  In the past I would have argued with this and tried to convince him that it WAS a good idea, but I had no reason to fight.  I know it’s not a good idea. My body just isn’t ready for it and doesn’t want to suffer.  I was told to take it back a notch, and I will try my best to do so:)

When I signed up for the Manchester City Marathon, I truly knew I could do the race. Honestly, I’m totally confident that if I went to that start line in 10 days, I could run 26.2 miles. But the question is, do I want to run 26.2 and possibly be in a lot of pain? No thank you. What would mile 20 feel like? Probably not very good. Also, I don’t know what kind of damage it will do and if it will jeopardize my Boston training. So in conclusion, for once I am going to listen and I’m OK with that.

 

 

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16 Comments

  • Reply Nicole October 22, 2014 at 9:50 pm

    I did the exact same thing after my ironman! Well, my marathon was 3.5 months after ironman but I also thought it was “just” a marathon during IM training and signed up right before the ironman to give myself something to look forward to. Well, it took me way longer than expected to recover from the ironman and I ended up dropping the race to a half as well. I did PR but just barely!

    I think you’re doing the right thing to drop down especially since you’re going to be training for Boston soon! Enjoy some much deserved downtime til then!

    • Reply Kristin October 24, 2014 at 5:59 pm

      Nicole, I’m so glad I’m not the only one! This makes me feel better. It has taken me WAY longer than expected to recover. While I know I am recovered from the actual race, I do have some lingering ‘issues’ going on. I don’t think it’s worth pushing it! Honestly, at this point, I might even bag the half ironman… still trying to decide if it’s worth it:)

  • Reply Courtney@The TriGirl Chronicles October 22, 2014 at 10:58 pm

    Good for you for listening to your body. It’s hard sometimes to fight that “Go-Go-Go” mentality and the adrenaline rush for a strong finish. Here’s to hoping you get some rest and refreshed =)

    • Reply Kristin October 24, 2014 at 6:00 pm

      Thanks Courtney! Yes, it’s so hard to listen to your body… the ‘old’ me would have pushed through this, but I am learning as I go… it’s not always the right thing to do and can be risky!

  • Reply Abby October 23, 2014 at 2:39 am

    Good for you for making this decision- not an easy one, but a smart one!
    After my first Ironman (AZ) I ran a marathon (Disney) 7 weeks later. I paid for it BIG TIME! (It didn’t help that I couldn’t run for a few weeks post-IM either…)

    You want to do this for a long time, and you have a couple of A races next year. I’m proud of you for listening to your body! Enjoy the taper before the half 🙂

    • Reply Abby October 23, 2014 at 2:46 am

      Silly me- I just clued in to why I used to get injured a lot! After my second Ironman (obviously I didn’t learn!), we ran a half marathon less than four weeks later!
      Serious kudos to you for listening to your body!

      • Reply Kristin October 24, 2014 at 6:03 pm

        Thanks Abby! Honestly, it is SO hard to listen to what your body is trying to tell you. I’m sure you paid for it after running Disney post Ironman, this is what scares me! I totally signed up for this race when I had the post-ironman blues. If I had the mindset I have now, I wouldn’t have signed up in the first place. I’m trying to think LONG term goals, instead of short term. This race just doesn’t seem worth the struggle:) I do have a big 2015 coming up, eeek! Hope you are feeling great!!!

  • Reply Desiree October 23, 2014 at 10:42 am

    Ha ha “just a marathon” after completing an ultra marathon a few years back, I totally get how our minds trick us in the whole “just a marathon” mind set. However with that being said a marathon is still a BIG deal and a lot of miles on our bodies. I have been in your shoes before where I had to make a big decision. Sometimes I would bump back to the half and other times I actually had a DNS (Did not start or I like to say Do Nothing Stupid). Been down the injury road a time or two (PF is the worse and my hubby has it now) I always tell myself if I have to go to the starting line already feeling broken, then it’s not worth it. Many other races ahead. And we know Rest and Recharging the body makes us stronger in the end. Took my stubborn mind to grasp that but now I value it. Hang in there 🙂

    • Reply Kristin October 24, 2014 at 6:06 pm

      It’s crazy how the mind works isn’t it?! I had no idea you did an ultra, that’s awesome! A marathon is definitely a big deal, silly me… Well that’s the thing, exactly what you said… going to the starting line already broken.. is it worth it? Probably not. Especially when it’s not you ‘A’ race. Sorry to hear your husband has PF, it’s honestly THE worst. After a year of dealing with it, knock on wood, mine has reduced big time. I’m also very stubborn, so I struggle with the whole ‘listening to the body’ thing:) have a great weekend!

  • Reply Irina October 23, 2014 at 7:39 pm

    If you had my coach he would have looked at you and kicked you in the head. He didn’t even want me to run a marathon after my first 70.3. I have had a lot of these conversations in my head since IMMT, but in the end it came to “what do I lose and what do I gain” if I continue running this year and the answer to that question decided the rest of my year as rest-and-strengthen, even though the mind has been rebelling every single day. It’s a battle, but it’s a battle worth fighting if you care about how you will start next year, especially if you want to do even better than this year. The body knows better.

    • Reply Kristin October 24, 2014 at 6:09 pm

      I know it is a little crazy… I am surprised he approved it in the first place. I almost wish he never did:( I have started to think about the lose/gain thing, as you mention here… you really have to think ‘is it worth it?’ I’m definitely going to slow down in a few weeks to strengthen and recover. It is SO hard mentally, but so important physically. Good for you for doing what’s best! You will be really happy you took it easy.

  • Reply Kecia October 23, 2014 at 10:52 pm

    Often the decisions that are the best for us are the ones that are the hardest to make. You are very wise to listen to your body and not push through. I learned that the hard way last year and had to remove myself from my 70.3 race as a result. You will be able to start the 2015 training season happy and healthy if you take the time your body needs now to fully rest and recover. While the body and mind don’t always agree with each other, the body usually wins when injuries are are a probability 🙁

    • Reply Kristin October 24, 2014 at 6:14 pm

      Absolutely, it’s so hard to make these kinds of decisions as athletes. I don’t want to learn the hard way, and I have to think about it that way:) I have done it before with plantar fasciitis and it came back to haunt me. The goal is to start the 2015 season STRONG! And yes, the body almost always wins.

  • Reply Kristen @ Glitter and Dust October 25, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    I think this is a great decision, Kristin. You know yourself better than anyone and if you are not feeling the marathon (or even half) then don’t do it. You have so much ahead of you! In the grand scheme of things, is it really that important? Of course I want to you to qualify for Boston for 2016 so I can run with you, but I’m sure you will have other opportunities. Even more so, I want you to go into the 2015 season strong and healthy. I completely understand the post-race blues and need for another race or goal. It takes a while for that “feeling” to wear off, but when it does the more sensible mind takes over. You are smart for listening to it. 🙂

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  • Reply Leslie @ Triathlete Treats October 30, 2014 at 5:38 pm

    Good decision! It is hard doing back to back big/hard races! Your body will thank you later! You have to give your body a rest so it can recover so you can build up to your next big effort again (i.e: Boston, IMMT). You can’t be in peak shape all year around. It totally sucks but finally after multiple IM races i have started to understand! 🙂

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