Below is something I wrote on Wednesday morning after I had done my morning run as I was trying to assess if I should keep up with the double runs days I had been doing for just over a week (on weekdays). I woke up with a headache that day and had a very slow 2.09 mile run that morning and I was trying to figure out if I was burning out or actually sick (our daughter had a fever a couple nights previous)…
Pretty damned tired today – woke up with a headache and almost got sick on the run this morning – not pleasant. Also ended up being my slowest morning run yet. At this point I might have to call it on the morning runs. I have to decide though if I am burning out or if I am just fighting something off – my daughter had a fever a couple nights ago so there could be something going around.
I also found I wasn’t pushing as hard last night on the treadmill – I am worried about burn out – if I can’t run hard on the short run days to get my speed up then the PR shot is in jeopardy.
Additionally with being extra tired I am craving carbs and caffeine and I am drinking too much Coke – damned near 2 liters last night. I need to get a handle on that as well if I want my weight moving in the right direction.
If I am getting overtired, I am risking a greater chance of getting sick or of injuring myself – either of which would be very bad right now. There would be impacts to the PR attempt on the half and then also to my Goofy Challenge training.
I don’t want to think this beat me but if I am risking my PR attempt then this just isn’t working for me at this point. I had hoped to do this week and next week and decide from there if I do one more week leading into the half marathon on October 19th. I am thinking though that doing this much longer is a bad idea. So I will look at how things go tonight on the medium / pace run and if it doesn’t feel decent or if I feel too tired then I will call the morning runs right there. If it goes ok then I will do Thursday’s and Friday’s morning runs and then drop them from there.
I have 18 miles scheduled for Sunday as I start putting in longer distance miles for the Goofy Challenge in January and I want to make sure I pull that one off.
So I am thinking that the current plan will be do finish off the week including the morning runs, do 4.5 on Saturday and 18 on Sunday and then fall back next week into just the regular scheduled runs. This should allow me to still training hard but recover more and get some additional rest that I am needing.
I think it was an interesting experiment and I can see the benefits of doing double run days but I just can’t seem to adapt fast enough to the change in schedule right now without risking my next half marathon. I might revisit it for a few weeks after the half is done while I back off some of the speed work for a while to add extra long distance miles – but I would then most likely drop them again as I started pushing more speed work again in probably November (or possibly not if I manage to adapt that time).
As you can see I was feeling pretty burnt out and that was before the headache got worse that night and even after a couple extra strength tylenol I still ended up having to call off the medium treadmill run that night – my first missed training run in a month. I ended up going to bed a couple hours early and still felt exhausted the next morning. At that point I said I was done with the morning runs for now – missing pacing runs and not pushing hard enough on speed days was not what I wanted out of the double runs.
I put in some extra miles on the Thursday run to make up for the lost pacing run on Wednesday which felt pretty good and then did no running at all on Friday. I was still pretty tired when I got up for my run this morning and started a bit later than I hoped as I lay in bed a little while longer but on the run itself I felt fine – just needed to get to bed earlier than I did last night!
So what did I learn? Basically that my body could take the extra training – my legs, etc feel fine even with the reduced recovery time but for it to work for me mentally I would need a lot more sleep and I would need to change my diet a bit to accommodate the extra miles. I had hoped that doing the extra miles would help to train the body to recover faster but also to help reduce my weight quicker – in the end I realized double run days are probably not a good tool for that – as I was getting overtired and under-fuelled I was consuming too many carbs (and especially coke with the sugar and caffeine) to function – you have to be more disciplined with your diet than I was to make that work properly I think.
After the WFPS Half marathon is done I will revisit again but I suspect it might be something I look at closer after the Goofy Challenge is done in January instead when I am not training for anything specific beside to get better overall.