Every time I have a big race (or even just a key workout) coming up, I plan to take extra time for rest and recovery. I designate a time when I’m going to spend a few hours with my feet up on the couch or go to bed an hour earlier. I might as well flash a neon sign that says “Now’s the time! Bring me your illnesses, bedtime stalling, and meltdowns! It’s time to fuss with each other or dirty a bunch of dishes.” I’m surely guaranteed at least one of the above. Maybe there will even be a minor emergency somewhere around the house.
I don’t know if this is coincidence or if I’m just more aware of it because I’m anticipating the extra rest. I enjoy my accomplishments as a runner, but I am certain I would benefit from more sleep.
But life doesn’t work that way.
The first few times something came up I would get upset or stress over the lost rest time, but I was still able to run my race and survive. I’ve come to terms with the fact that my plans as a runner come after being a wife and mother. So if that means I miss out on some sleep two nights before a race because someone needs me, then so be it. If my race taper finds me washing four loads of towels from a hot water heater accident, then that’s what I do. Someday, maybe I’ll get the extra rest once the kids are grown. Until then, I’ll just see what life brings me for the next big race.
Race Note: I’m running my second marathon on Sunday in Oklahoma City. I’m shooting for a new PR to post on my author’s bio page, and yes, last week I did wash and dry four loads of towels.