Excuses, Excuses and Stress, Stress

I’m having one of those crazy busy weeks–both at work and at home. I’m not fitting in runs, and while I feel guilt about that, I know that sometimes I just have to let a few days go by. That being said, I really need a run right now. I’m feeling very on edge and stressed out. I keep noticing that my stomach muscles are clenched tight. I remind myself to relax, but then the next time I notice they are clenched again.

I tend to go through anxiety cycles like this that are usually spurred by a combination of stressful activities happening close to the same time. I walk around constantly feeling tense. While most people are prone to eating more at times like this, for me, my appetite is the first to go. I haven’t been hungry for several days now. I guess this will help me shed the extra pounds I picked up over the winter! I hate these stressful times though because I know stress is really hard on your body. Stressing over being stressed sure doesn’t help, though! For me, to-do lists (and checking things off) and keeping as organized as I can helps. And running of course.

The other thing I’ve noticed today is that I’m so TIRED. After a couple of days of no running, it’s amazing the fatigue I feel. How does burning extra energy somehow create extra energy for the rest of the day? Last night, I would have fallen asleep in the car on the way home from gymnastics had I not been driving, and today at school I was dragging.

I’m hoping after Evan’s soccer practice and dinner and getting groceries I can squeeze a run in on the treadmill before I grade a bunch of student papers (really docs as it’s all computer). Chris is at a board meeting tonight so it will have to be treadmill run or none.

Do you feel yourself going through stressful cycles like this? What are your stress remedies? Do you feel more tired when you can’t run?

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When to Race?

Today I came home to my big box of Old Navy purchases only to find that I only liked TWO things out of all that I ordered! Either the color or fit was completely different than the website. I spent a good hour Sunday morning going through and picking things out, and then a half hour tonight trying things on and repacking the box to return it…I guess I should’ve just gone to a store. Oh well! At least Old Navy has free returns & the shipping  was free too with a coupon I had.

This post is really about racing. I just had to toss that Old Navy info in there because I know you were dying to know how my purchase ended up. :)

My husband uses local 5k’s as speed workouts for his triathlon training. Most people will run faster in a race, even a small, low-stakes one, than in training, so this is a pretty effective strategy. I followed his lead last year and did a lot of racing. What ended up happening was the novelty of the race wore off a bit and towards the end of the year. I felt I was just racing to race and wasn’t getting the adrenaline/”race” factor out of it. I started picking distances I hadn’t done before so I didn’t have to deal with the pain of reaching for a 5k PR. I wasn’t setting goal races and I wasn’t really planning ahead.

Right now, I’m not in great shape. I’ve run most of the winter, but I’ve run slowly most of the winter. I have a good base, but I don’t have speed. I have some work to do. I need some longer runs on the weekends and at least one quality speedy run during the week. I also need to drop a few pounds…I’ve gained this winter, and even though it’s probably only 5-10 pounds (I don’t have a scale), that is 5-10 more pounds to carry while running! Spring racing season is upon us. I have no desire to race right now, because I know I will get a horrid time and be mad at myself. However, maybe that horrid time would motivate me. Maybe that race would be a great speed workout.  Or, maybe it would defeat me and embarrass me. I really don’t know.

Do you only race when you are in race form and in shape, or do you race anytime? Do you race TO get in form? Do you set goal races?  I really don’t know what is best right now…pick a race to gauge my fitness level, pick a goal race to work towards, give up racing all together (ha)…help!


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Great Running Links

I don’t have many nice things to say after a very windy and harder-than-it-should’ve-been run tonight, so I’ll leave you with some great running links I came across today.

Google Translate for Runners

70 Thoughts Every Runner Has While Out For a Run

The 25 Worst Questions to Ask a Runner

Cool video “What If Everybody Ran?”

Is anyone else following Desiree (Linden) Davila’s training in Kenya? The videos are really interesting. Episode 3 just came out a few days ago:

(repeat share) “Run Run Run” video

“The Science of Marathon Running” – This video from “It’s Okay to Be Smart” explains why humans are born to be distance runners

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