The last few weeks have seriously been a blur. I had three work events in three weeks and I am still recovering now. We had an open day, then an event in Rocky for 4 days and then an event in Brisbane for 4 days and whilst I assured myself before they all started that I would still have plenty of time for training I didn’t.
I was ready to run in Rocky but the man at the hotel told me not to run around where we were staying and there was no gym, so I managed a P90x session one day but none of the others as I was shattered from the event! Last week in Brisbane I was so stressed and tired each day from the drive into the city and back each day that I didn’t do much training either – I managed ballet on the Tuesday and that was about it. So I decided enough was enough as I had eaten what I wanted to and whatever was put in front of me and have been riding a sugar high. On that same day my husband came home from the gym and said ‘Zoe I’m fat!’ – so I decided that a two week detox was in order. we’re on day 2!
I try and do theJason Vale Juice Master 14 day detox programonce a year if I can. It’s hard especially the first few days but it really kickstarts the metabolism and the healthy eating although I can’t do as intensive training as I am used to until it’s over.
Yesterday was hard as my system didn’t know what had hit it and I had juice for breakfast, hummus and pitta for lunch and then a protein based dish in the evening. I was so tired that I couldn’t get out and run and even had a nap in the afternoon. I had a headache all day probably from the sugar withdrawal and that has continued into today but I’m feeling good, just very grumpy! I did body pump and cycling this morning and plan to start running again tomorrow so hopefully I won’t be like a bear with a sore head running round Forest lake!
Have you ever been an overtrainer?
I went through a period where I wanted to train and train, and my times got really good and I didn’t want to rest because I was worried I would lose my fitness (in one day yeah!).
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about my running and my going to the gym. I have found that now I have relaxed a bit more about it all, and am not stressing about whether I miss a run or whether I am slow – that my running and general well being has improved. I’m still pushing hard and running and doing classes but my attitude is different and I take rest days :-)
How do you know if you are overtraining?
The way I know now from experience of overtraining now is that:
- I am tired and lethargic all the time and it’s an effort to even get out of bed let alone to get to training
- I find that my running times get slower rather than faster even though I am training hard
- I get very grumpy and irritable. My poor husband cops it, although he knows now to hide and leave me alone!
- I get sick and then sick again and always seem to feel sick and not 100% – I went through a period of training really hard but I would hit a plateau and get sick and get knocked back down again and then have to work to get back to where I was
Did you know there is actually an overtraining syndrome? There’s quite a lot of research that has been done into it and many elite athletes suffer with it as do us normal people. It’s basically defined as ‘a collapse in performance that occurs when the body gets pushed beyond its capacity to recover’, and the issue is often not a problem of too much training, but of too little rest according to Kristen Dieffebbach, PHD – an assistant professor of athletic coaching at West Virginia University.
Many of my friends and myself also have very busy lives and we fit our training in by juggling schedules and getting up at unearthly hours, so we are at risk of overtraining and not resting enough as much as anyone else. It’s an issue I have become more and more aware of since being in Australia. Fitness is a big thing here if you are into it, it’s all or nothing.
There isn’t a magic pill to take to ensure you don’t overtrain, it’s just common sense really. make sure you rest and have a good work, life and exercise balance. I don’t claim to be an expert on these matters but just go on what I have been through or witnessed.
I’m thinking about swimming.
One of the girls that I know that goes to the gym is a triathlete and put the idea in my head of swimming in order to tone and improve my fitness. I’ve been feeling a bit fat and untoned so I mentioned this to her and she said what about swimming?
The idea of swimming to me was initially not that great. The thought of me baring almost all to get into a pool and swim was not inviting but then I thought some more. I figure swimming is good for all round toning, it would complement my running and it’s not as taxing on the joints.
So I went out last weekend in Noosa and bought myself a nice fancy looking swimming costume and I told my friend yes I’m going to swim – so I have to now!
So watch this space, you never know I could find myself doing a triathlon – highly unlikely but then again I used to always say I’d never run a marathon and I’ve run four……
I’m sat at home watching a documentary about three guys who challenged themselves to run across the whole of the Sahara. It’s inspiring but hasn’t inspired me to want to do the same! 7000 km + is a long way to run for 12 hours at a time in 140 degree ground temperature and eating camel for food!
It makes you realise though just what we are potentially capable of if we put our minds to it. I’m finding myself slightly addicted to watching and reading extreme running books and dvds at the moment to get some motivation for my comparably short runs.
I’ve had a pretty bad week as you will know if you read my previous post, and next week I intend to have a recovery week and then I think I’ll be ready to do last minute training for the Mothers Day 8k. I feel like someone has just got all my energy and taken it and given it to someone else. I seem to have this a couple of times a year and then usually bounce back – it’s like my body decides it needs a full on rest and breaks down until it gets it – so I listen to it now, I never used to and would push on through.
I think a rest is in order for tomorrow morning and then it is rock climbing tomorrow night and a 10kish run on Saturday.
I have to confess, I slept in this morning!
I did however do a hard sprint session last night – I didn’t feel like I did very well though.
You know when you have those training sessions and you just don’t seem to have gotten anywhere and you’ve stopped and started and you wonder whether it was worth doing to begin with? well yes it was one of those! My wonderful friend was also right next to me on the treadmill which didn’t help as all I wanted to do was chat to her and found excuses not to run too hard! But I did a few good speed intervals – it was a hard one last night – thanks Roger!
So yes today I slept in. I haven’t stopped at work today – it’s been crazy racing around as I am launching a new website for them – so I’ve had a productive and exhilarating day but haven’t done an ounce of exercise !
I’ll make up for it tomorrow though as I’m running 10k and going to BodyPump :-)
So I have been gearing up for my first race for a good couple of months now. Woke up this morning and felt ok but it’s 8pm now and I have slowly felt worse and worse as the day has gone on and my race is tomorrow !
I’ve drunk plenty of fluids, had my carbs, had some vitamin c and garlic capsules, and smothered myself with Vicks so here’s hoping I wake up tomorrow and feel better. It’s only a short race but short = short, sharp and fast so not ideal when your chest feels like you have 50 people sitting on it!
I’ll let you know how it goes…
It’s all change from next week!
I’ll be a lady of leisure as my job is coming to an end. I shouldn’t say this but i am actually looking forward to not having to get up at 5am to fit my training in. I’m planning an extensive training programme! In fact I got quite excited looking at the gym class schedule last week :-)
I figure I can schedule myself a nice afternoon nap as well :-)
I will of course be applying for jobs but I figure if in the meantime it means I can get even fitter that’s a good thing right?
I was going through some stuff at home the other day and I came upon a box of medals that I have had from the races I have run.
It’s funny because it seems to be now that entering a fun run or general race means you get a medal even if you don’t win. Don’t get me wrong I think it is a great incentive for running a race as I have been known to struggle round because I want that medal at the end. But I wonder how those elite athletes now feel knowing that even if they win they aren’t the only one that is going to get a medal…I guess that’s why prizes such as financial ones became more of a draw! (although I guess no one would turn down a financial incentive!).
Anyway I have my marathon medals framed as they are the ones that are the most significant to me. You’d have to bribe me now to do another full marathon I think, but I look at those medals and I remember the pain and the tears that flowed training for those races and the tears of joy when I crossed the finish lines each time. I can’t believe I did those races but I am very glad that I did because they made me mentally stronger – you have to be to get through the last 6.25 miles (10k).
So I’ve made a page on my site to show the races and times I have done. There are no super duper times but they are all times that I am proud of and mean something to me, and give me a reason to keep running and great memories.
If you had told me 10 years ago that I would be a runner, I would have choked on my doughnut! So I guess without sounding corny, running has been my life saver in a number of ways and it has introduced me to an awesome number of people with life experiences and advice that I will always cherish.
I’ve been training hard for the last year and finally the hard work seems to be paying off. Not sure if it is a coincidence that I have started P90x and am eating more protein (probably?) but I am finally feeling pretty fit.
I am on week 2 (Day 11) of P90x and have been fitting in runs as well. I went to the gym tonight and did a good hard fast run for 30 mins. Managed 6 k in 30 mins which is not bad for me – used to be able to run that a lot quicker but that was good for me on tired legs.
I’ve dropped a dress size, my arms are starting to look more toned than the bingo wings they were and my husband keeps smiling a lot and telling me how great I look. It’s a nice feeling.
I guess what I am saying is don’t give up as whatever your goal is it will come eventually. I used to feel a bit inferior with the girls that I run with as they are all way fitter than me and a lot smaller but I am learning to listen to my body and not judge myself next to others. I’ve run marathons and survived and they will always be my biggest achievements as I look back now and think ‘how did I find the time?’ and ‘how on earth did I manage them?’.
Too often we are unhappy with what we have and we always want more, but I am finally starting to realise actually I have come a long way, I have toned up, I am fit now and I don’t look so bad either :-). I couldn’t have got through this though without friends and the girls I run with – this year has been quite a journey for all of us I think.
So hey if I can do it, so can you!
My goals for this year are to complete P90x and to be fitter ready for the start of the race season. What are your goals?
Have been feeling a bit under the weather lately but my friend wanted to run so it motivated me to get out of bed and to go. I then did a revs class afterwards so I am feeling somewhat tired now!
Run wise, we went later than normal (6.20am) and spring is definitely on its way here in Brisbane so I found the warmer heat hard today and had to rest a little bit and ended up doing 9.5k whilst my friend did 11.5k (an extra lap round the lake). Although I didn’t run as far we did a really good speed around the lake and I felt really good so all that speed work is starting to pay off :-)
Coming from England the heat here in Brisbane really seems to get to me. I have found it hard since I moved here to adjust to the climate and where the girls I run with seem to find the heat ok I find it just makes me tired and lethargic so I think early morning runs are the order of the day or later at night at the gym.
Do you struggle with the heat?
One of the guys I used to train with in London always said to me when it gets warm, all bets are off – slow down, take on water and accept that you might not do as good a training session or race time as you had hoped to.
Easier said than done I know as everyone wants to push but I have had a number of occasions in the UK where I have ended up in accident and emergency on a stretcher because I didn’t take this advice, overheated and collapsed – one was very embarrassingly in Sainsbury’s supermarket and when I came to all I could hear was someone shrieking ‘can we have a first aider to aisle 2′ and whilst that was going on someone was trying to shove a mars bar down my throat!! A Mars bar of all things - why not some lower calorie snack !! :-)
Here’s a few extra links to websites that give advice on running in the heat that you might find useful:
About.com running in the heat
Active.com tips for running in heat
Cool Running – beat the heat
Please feel free to share any words of wisdom that you have experienced with running in the heat.