Is it mid-semester exhaustion or am I just really tired? One last week of hard training to go, with today: a rest day. No classes on Friday but it’s really my “admin” day: submit proposals, write letters, continue research. I’d hoped to write (and stay on top of the blog), make some more connections and set up more interviews but my morning got swallowed up first in tracking down Henry’s bag of clothes that he left somewhere at school after changing into soccer clothes. Then, with dismay, when I sat down at my desk I knew I owed it to (at least) two classes of students to review mid-term portfolios and post mid-term grades.
But what does that have to do with training? First, thank you notes must go out to Janice (I need your mailing address) and Debbie for being the first to be interviewed. The footage is beautiful and it will be hard to pull out just a few pieces of SO much insight and strength. Themes that came up: balance, perspective, ego, confidence, community, and self-knowledge. Both women articulated a very admirable understanding of who they are as an athlete, a mom, a friend… I hope the process of being able to just talk about their experiences rewarded them with some personal insight.
If I had the time and energy to write this week, I would have written about how exhausted I was by Wednesday, and that was after choosing to miss the Sunday long run—the very first time I had to make that choice to forego a group run to give my full attention to my family. It was the weekend of the Folk Festival and with Don as an exhibitor, and as the maker of the fiddle to be awarded to the fiddle context winner I needed to be available to him and to Henry. (Thank you to Mary and John from Alexandria for driving down on Saturday). Every year since it’s inception, the Festival weekend belongs solely to the Festival and to friends. I normally work on some aspect of the signage, so there is some professional investment there but more than anything it represents two and half days of exposure to music and culture from around the world and the chance to see friends from all over the city who I sometimes see but just once a year.
But I’ve kept up with the plan. As much as I wanted to just stay home on Wednesday, I knew I’d feel even worse loosing that one day of contact with my students. And, surprisingly, by mid-morning I was feeling energized and wound out, trying to help my students tie up midterm portfolios. I had my gym bag with me “in hopes” that I felt up for the scheduled run at the gym. I went through all the motions: drive to the gym and find a place to park. Pick up a towel from the front desk. Stumble to the locker room and change into running clothes. Climb the steps to the treadmills and just do what I could. I ended up getting the full 5-mile run in with negative splits and a sprint for the last half-mile. I must say this with every post. So much of fatigue seems mental. On my Saturday before the festival I got in a 5 mile run and felt tired and labored. But when I checked my pace, it was among my fasted 5-mile training runs. I’m running faster overall, but it’s just harder.
Our last 20-mile run is this Sunday. I think a lot about time for the race in exactly 3 weeks. I know what I can do. I’m not sure I know how best to do it!