Who'd have thought that running your fastest half marathon in five years and your third fastest ever would make you a bit tired? Sometimes I wish I still had the bounce-back ability of a twenty-something year old. But very few fifty year olds do.
I do, however, have a secret weapon. And it's not my testosterone cream. That only makes me normal - not super-human.
My secret weapon is experience and patience. And my experience is telling me that I need to take it easy this week. My patience means that I can ignore the numbers on my training program if my body's telling me that a bit of extra rest is necessary.
I went to speed session yesterday knowing that I wasn't going to be feeling my most bouncy. And I wasn't. My hamstrings were tight. My quads were tight. My neck and shoulders were tight. But I made it through the session way better than I'd expected and even ran the fastest kilometre that I've run in a couple of years.
But today my body is tired and I'm looking at tomorrow's 16k and wondering what is the most prudent thing to do. My options - run the 16k very relaxed, cut it back to 10 or 12 OR (and this is a legitimate training session) sleep in.
Rest is one of the most important training tools of any athlete. It's when we consolidate all of the training that we do. Our muscles repair themselves and get stronger when we rest and I'm pretty sure that's what my body's crying out for today.
Yes, I know that there's only about 6 weeks till my marathon BUT it's better to have an extra rest day now than to drag through 6 weeks of training feeling exhausted.
So instead of talking about running today I'm going to write a glowing post on my much-maligned husband. Yes, I'm the one who does the maligning but this week he's in my good books so I thought I'd better actually write something nice about him for a change.
He was the most awesome support team for me on the weekend. Anything I wanted, he did. It was like having a not-so-evil minion. He carried my stuff for me. He woke up at a ridiculously early hour for me. He walked kilometres on the course so he could cheer me on. And he laughed at all my jokes.
He was so well behaved that I decided he needed a reward. So Sunday after the race I took him to the movies to watch sci-fi (believe me, that was a sacrifice), took him for ice cream (okay, that was probably more for me than him) and then I let him eat beans for breakfast the next day even though I knew we'd be locked in a car together for the next couple of hours.
And that, my friends, is the secret to a happy marriage. Treat him mean and keep him keen. And then surprise him with occasional acts of kindness.
Works for me.