>> Thursday, June 27, 2013
I thought I'd take a break from food today to share a continuation on a freelance article I wrote this week about Getting Back Into Running After Sickness. A part II, if you will. Though, if you'd like a basic how to start back again on the path to normal training, you should definitely check out the other piece.
So, in short -- I was really sick and didn't run for twelve days. As in, almost two weeks. I've written before about the DOs and DON'Ts of running while sick, and since this cold resided in my chest with a low-grade fever, I knew I shouldn't even try to get in my nomal miles. What a bummer.
When I headed out on one of my return-to-running runs yesterday, it struck me that my attitude toward this topic has changed dramatically over the course of my time with the sport. When I was a newbie, I was devastated whenever I was sick. Time off my feet meant getting off schedule and getting off schedule was catastrophic. I'd try desperately to sneak in any distance at any pace just to maintain some semblance of continuity.
Otherwise, I felt DOOMED.
I distinctly remember one cold February afternoon in college when I slugged along to run my 4 miles on the treadmill, "sweating out" a fever. I'm sure that did me no good at all -- not for my sickness, not for my race plan. It wasn't an isolated incident either. Now -- years, many illnesses, injuries, and a pregnancy + postpartum period later, I'm faster than I have ever been and have had multiple lapses in my training ranging from days to months.
Yes. There have been times when I haven't gone for a run in months.
And yet, here I am.
Still breaking personal records.
Each and every time something happens that takes me away, I've learned something. Over time, that accumulation of knowledge has enlightened me to the fact that -- yeah, I might not be performing at optimal levels at all times, but ultimately, it doesn't matter much. Our bodies, if we otherwise maintain some consistency with running, rebound. It's like riding a bike in that respect.
Getting back into it is difficult, but the muscle memory is there.
The cardiovascular system catches up, lagging only slightly.
If you are sick or discouraged in the wake of some unplanned hiatus, I hope this is encouraging news to hear. It can be one of the hardest messages to deliver to ourselves. I mean, during the height of sickness . . . it can feel like you're a tragically frail character in a Victorian romance novel . . . but you'll heal and be back running (as it nothing ever happened) before you know it.
But I hope you're all well!
What's on your training plan today?
Like what you just read? You can subscribe to the feed of these posts or follow us on Twitter or Facebook to be the first to know what the (never home)makers are up to. And we’ll love you forever!