Well, I'm here to tell you: post-race blues is a real thing!
After arriving home late the night of the race, I talked through its entirety to Bill on the phone while he was driving home from their weekend of riding. I needed him to know all the details and he needed to stay awake.
After that, our weeks were chock full. Concerts, graduations, field trips, a wedding, a wedding reception for Aunt Denise and Uncle Roy, a hare scramble and more. (All of this is a major reason why I didn't blog about my race or anything else after- there was no time to.) Unbeknown to me in all that business was something lurking below the surface as my body tried to recover.
At first, I thought I was just tired from running the race and the fourteen hour drive and having to go, go, go right after. But it wasn't until I was sitting in the parking lot, having gotten groceries, nearly in tears for no apparent reason that I wondered if something was truly the matter with me. I notified my coach of my emotional state, my lack of hunger, my overwhelmed feelings, and my restless sleeping. (Keep these all in mind. They will make a reappearance in another post.) She explained to me that all these things were normal after a race. I was experiencing post-race blues. It was a sign that I really did leave it all out on the course. Yay for me.
Except now what? Coach explained that, similar to postpartum blues, my body was going through hormonal changes from all the effort and I should eat as I can, sleep as I can, and try to carry on normal life as I can and it will all work out.
There is a lot of relief when you find out you're not really crazy.
I slowly built my running back up but didn't have much drive in me. I'm okay with down time. I think every runner should have off-seasons. But the thing was, I didn't know what to do after my recovery time was over. I had just raced my two biggest dream races. Where do I go from here? Do I race smaller races and try to get faster? Do I build up this new middle ground of 13 to 17 miles? The first option didn't really appeal to me. I spent too much time tackling tough terrain and climbing stair after stair at Ledges State Park to let that go now. The middle ground was a pretty good option but didn't get my juices flowing enough. What to do? What to do?
|Looks like I had a little trouble staying away from the mud after the races|
|A burning sunrise is good for the soul|
Obviously Bill agreed or I'm being completely defiant, which I'm not but let me clarify my statements in my run on sentence above.
- GOATZ- Greater Omaha Area Trail Runner
- No conflicts- If you'll recall, I ran the Zumbro race and it turns out it was the same weekend as prom and we hadn't planned on Audrey possibly going to prom her sophomore year and my mom came down to help out. Etc for all scheduling conflicts.
- Seven hours one way for a race is quite a long way and takes a toll on the whole family. After dealing with the stress of Superior, I'm going to take advantage of the closer races.
- Turkeys- also known as (Luke really loves to say a.k.a. by the way.) the trail runners group of the Des Moines Capitol Striders. These are my trail running people. They've run the races I've wanted to. They don't think I'm crazy for running trail. They keep inspiring me. I love them a lot!
- If something came up and Bill couldn't come with me, I would have a ride to the race with my fellow Turkeys. I don't like driving home by myself after a hard race. I worry about fatigue and being safe.
- I wanted to try a 50k but didn't know if I could do it so soon into this new trail running journey and especially this year but my coach really thought I could do it and that's what I needed to hear.
I entered a local 5k race last minute which gave me a nice burst of adrenaline and with that, started planning my Summer and Fall running and racing.
|Written 18 weeks ago|