Recovering from Recovery

Hard work has taken on an entirely new meaning for me over the last few months.  I’ve learned how to push through set backs and train through fatigue.  I’ve worked hard to hone my nutrition – “eat to train” became our grocery-shopping mantra.  After months of pushing through, eating well, and turning down social invites so that I could get proper rest… I needed a break.

The 70.3 didn’t cripple me for a week the way a hard marathon may have so I was feeling great when I did an easy run only a few days afterward.  Though my body didn’t need much of a rest, my brain was still exhausted!  Honestly, I enjoy healthy eating so it’s not that I didn’t want to eat foods that were good for me this last week, rather, I really needed a break from THINKING about nutrition.  SO… I spent this week NOT thinking about nutrition and it was fantastic! 😀  I did a couple of easy runs and I ate whatever I happened to feel like eating whenever I felt like eating it.  When my dear friend Ruth offered me freshly baked pumpkin muffins, I had three.  When I felt like having chocolate, I found our left over Easter candy (yes… from Easter and it was still delicious thankyouverymuch).  When I didn’t particularly feel like having a salad, I didn’t, and when I went to the grocery store to pick up some more veggies for the week I also grabbed a pound of brie and a french baguette that I ate, alone, with two glasses of red wine.

Truthfully, a lot of my healthy eating has been a means of coping with gastrointestinal issues.  Despite my history of upset stomachs I was miraculously able to eat loads of junk food for the majority of the week with virtually no consequences.  Sadly, I doubt that even those with a stomach of steel can gorge on a half of a pound of brie cheese, wine and a massive serving of bread without some GI retribution.  Hours after my solo French fest, I clutched my stomach and thought “Okay, I think I’m ready for training and good nutrition, again.”  😀

Aaaaand of course, now that I’m ready to get out there and sweat, there’s a friggin’ hurricane! haha.  Thankfully, I had an active weekend to burn off some brie and feel refreshed.  I walked at least 8 miles during Justin’s marathon, yesterday, and you have to walk pretty darn fast to spectate when your athlete runs his marathon in 2 hours and 31 minutes!  GEESH!

I really do feel refreshed after a week of care-free eating and loosely structured recovery workouts.  I needed it!  Recovery is important, mentally as well as physically!  It is important, though, to know WHAT KIND of recovery you need and HOW MUCH is enough. 🙂  When I felt bloated and gross after a week of questionable dietary decisions, I knew I was ready to feel lean and energetic, again.  Also, watching my husband absolutely conquer his marathon and finish top ten overall was inspirational!  I was so thrilled for him and so proud of all of his hard work that I couldn’t help but long to sweat and compete, again.

I think that I earned every bite of pumpkin muffin and every once of brie that I ate this week, maybe not calorie-wise (haha) but definitely in overall effort.  I don’t even feel the slightest bit guilty for my indulgences and for me, THAT is a first.  There’s no way I’d be ready to get back to the business of training, again, if I hadn’t really taken a break.  Work hard and recover hard; be kind to yourself.  🙂  Now, it’s time to recover from all of that recovering!

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