Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Runner Brain

So here's the thing.

I had all these grand aspirations to come back from Disney World, take a little break to recover, and then hit the pavement hard.  The way I saw it, I was in the best shape of my life and would just keep building on that.  I figured I'd keep the mileage up and could PR at a spring half, all the while staying in shape for fulls.

Yeah, about that...

My body definitely needed a lot more time to recover.  I took several weeks off.  When I started running again, it was only for short distances.  I ran that half in February and felt defeated when I finished in 2:11 and was exhausted.  I've skipped long runs.  I've cut long runs short. 

I've realized that I had some pretty unrealistic expectations.

I have a half coming up on Saturday, one that I had hoped to PR at... but I know that I'm a bit undertrained.  It sucks considering just two months ago I was at the end of a crazy training cycle that had me running 39.3 miles in one weekend.  I mean, I had PRed in almost EVERY distance in the few months proceeding that.  How can I be in this place now where I'm doubting my ability to run a half well?

I have to remember that I have kept running enough that I've gone out on some 12-13 mile runs in the past month.  I can't really complain about that.  It's not like I'm out of shape.  I'm just not as in shape as I'd like to be.

Typical runner brain.  I know that I've done the right thing by allowing myself ample time to recover and ease back into it, but at the same time it's really hard to not feel like I've been a slacker.  I know it'd be nuts to try to PR at this race, but I also kind of want to try.  Maybe my legs are really fresh?

Nonetheless, I think the best thing is for me to get out there, run what feels comfortable, and see what happens.

But I won't lie... I'll still be pushing it to see what I can do.


Laura said...

Good luck at the half - you never know how you'll do! In January 2009, I got a PR in a marathon after not running for over 6 weeks. I was doing it just to finish and could not BELIEVE how fast I ended up being. Maybe the break will be exactly what you need :)

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Tasha said...

Good luck at your half! I know exactly what you mean about feeling like a slacker when you allow your body to rest! Just don't overdo it and listen to your body! Hopefully, you will feel great on race day and have a better finish time than you could even imagine! Don't forget to be proud of yourself for completing a HALF MARATHON!!! That's a big deal!