Let's talk about the middle child of the marathon, the post marathon slump. Once you survive training, tapering and running the marathon itself, you find yourself in the twilight zone. Some call it the post marathon blues, I like to call it the post marathon slump. The post marathon slump sucks for all marathoners but it is especially tough on serial runners like myself. I am a running addict. I love the get out of jail free cards that training for a marathon gives me and in the post marathon slump, there are no more get out of jail free cards and that SUCKS.
And honestly, I don't feel like me when I'm not running. I get bored, restless, and antsy when my routine gets disrupted I go crazy when I don't have a goal I'm working towards. But when you run a marathon, it's important that you take time to recover regardless of how you feel. I got really lucky after Berlin and I felt fresh 10 days after the marathon. I was able to continue running normally between the two. But after NYC, I knew I needed to hit the brakes and let my body crash after the insane year I've had. Even though I don't run particularly fast, the best way to treat injuries is to prevent them so I've been forcing myself to take it easy for the next 4 weeks. Lots of easy runs and cross training while my body gets a chance to forget what I just put it through. But that time off isn't easy! It's a mental mind f*ck! Here are the worst parts about being in the post marathon slump --
1. Re-Adjusting to a Normal Diet.
I love eating. I love that I can reach for a brownie or a cupcake here and there and not worry about it because I'm clocking 40-50 mile weeks. But I can't do that anymore! Gone are the days of 3k calorie diets! I love my carbs! Carbs understand me! I've been marathon training since March so re-adjusting to life as a normal runner has been tough. Go easy on me, I need to re-learn what hungry means.
2. Spare Time.
I hate spare time. I'm one of those crazy people who loves it when every single second of my day is booked. I LOVE the adrenaline rush I get when I'm trying to juggle 100 balls that are flying through the air. It's why I'm always over-extending myself. It's a choice. But now, I have all this spare time! I'm driving my roommates insane because I'm always around asking them to entertain me. It's awful.
3. People Expect You To Date Again.
Not even 12 hours passed before someone asked me if I was going to start dating again. Running a marathon is such a good excuse to the, "Are you seeing anyone" question. No one is going to roll their eyes at you when you tell them that you don't have time because you're training for a marathon. They're going to call you crazy and look at you like you're a God because running a marathon is a big ass deal!
4. No More Friday Night Excuses.
I'm the Queen of the runholes. I'm selfish and I love sleep so I have no problem throwing the, "I can't. I have to run in the morning" card down. No birthday, concert, sporting event, or date will motivate me to not want to get in bed by 9pm on a Friday. But now that I don't have a marathon to train for, that excuse doesn't work anymore. And my friends know it...
Here's what's really pathetic, I feel kind of empty and bleh. People ask me what's next and my heart dies when I realize I have nothing on my calendar. I forgot what it's like to not have a marathon to work towards. Who am I?!?!
WOAH! That just got really depressing. Alright friends, let's be real. YES going from one marathon back into the real world is shocking. NO it's not easy readjusting to normal non-marathon life. BUT WE WILL SURVIVE. We've done it before! Step 1, new goals. I really want to see what I can do in the muscle department so along with my cross training, I think I'm going to re-introduce myself to some weight machines...AND OK FINE. I'm gonna go for an easy run.
Until next time, #RunSelfieRepeat.