Thursday, October 6, 2016
Dealing with Post-Race Blues
Before I continue, I'm linking up with the Friday Five link up hosted by Courtney at Eat Pray Run DC, Cynthia at You Signed Up for What and Mar at Mar on the Run. Be sure to check them out when you're done reading here!
I have to admit, I only sort of have the blues. I am happy that I have a bit of a break from running but I do feel a little aimless as I don't really know what I'm doing for the foreseeable future. I have some health stuff I need to take care of so that is my top priority right now and I won't be able to run for some time. But once I'm recovered, I'm just going to see what happens. So, in the meantime, here's how I like to deal with the post-race blues:
1. Revel in the recovery. You worked hard for this. You busted your butt every single week for months to get to your race. Early mornings. Late nights. Dedication is exhausting. Take the time you need to rest up and recover from your race. There are differing theories on how much time you need to recover but a good rule of thumb is at least a few days to a couple of weeks off after your run, depending on the distance you ran, how hard you raced and how you feel. You can run/walk or just walk in that time but I wouldn't do any real training. The time immediately following a tough race effort is prime time for getting hurt if you don't take the time to rest and recover. You've earned it, now enjoy it.
2. Try something new. If you are taking a little break from running, this is a great time to try something new or re-ignite your love for something else. Cross training is also a great way to recover because you are moving your body in a different way than when running. You are also taking a break from the impact your body endures when pounding the pavement. Your body will thank you for giving it a chance to move in different ways. I can't wait to get back on my yoga mat!
3. Volunteer and/or spectate a race. Since I know I'll be taking a break from running for a bit, that doesn't mean I need to take a break from races. I plan on volunteering and spectating during this time. It's a great way to be a part of the community as well as remind me why I love this sport.
4. Spend time with running friends doing non-running things. Who says you can only see your running buddies on the run? Go out for coffee or lunch. Maybe see a movie. All the things you love to chat about while on the run are just as funny and wonderful when chatting over coffee.
5. Sign up for another race. If you're feeling aimless and like there is nothing to look forward to, maybe start looking for other races. Just be sure you give yourself enough time to recover from your last race and enough time to prepare for the new race. This is helpful if your race didn't go the way you were hoping it would. When in doubt, consult a coach for advice on training. I happen to know a good one :)
Do you get the post-race blues? How do you deal with the let-down after a race?