08 November 2009

How to Manage Being Sick

My Master Swim workout last week was terrible. I had not been sleeping well the week prior (for which I blame the World Series,) and my body just plain felt run down and on the verge of getting sick. Plus, I have just had some enormous projects on the burner, papers to correct, smaller musical projects with encroaching deadlines, and family obligations to fulfill. I know my body. I can beat the heck out of it. I can run brick workouts during the day and feel like Superman during the evening (I've never actually put on a cape and tights,) but if I have too many things on my mind with none of them being addressed because I have now entered the "paralyzed deer in headlights" phase, it is all but over for me. Athletes understand that our psychological state can make an enormous difference between a PR (personal record,) and having a dreadful training day. Long story short, I quit my workout 1200 yards in. I rarely ever quit a workout, but it happens.

I sat on a bench in the pool area recovering from my terrible swim workout feeling quite demoralized. An acquaintance of mine—a terrific age group triathlete—who often takes first overall at many regional sprint and olympic distance triathlons came up to chat for a bit. With three children of her own and a full-time job, she understands the demands that a family and real life places on a training schedule and your psyche. She said, "Could you imagine if we had the luxury of training full-time like the pros?" Ah, it would be nice to have a ton of discretionary time to train without worrying about the million other things we have circling around our brain. I can generally turn it off when I am training, but there are times that I can't. I especially dislike how cranky I get if I do not get to the gym because one of my children are sick, or I would have too small of a window to actually get in a workout. Want to see me really cranky? You will if I miss three consecutive days of training.

I got in the pool yesterday (Sunday 8 November) and did a solid 2150 yard Masters Swim. I felt terrible going in. However, although I was a bit winded doing my sprints and immediately after my warm down, I felt great the rest of the day and felt like my immune system suddenly received the boost it needed. It is a little crazy. I never know when to push my body through a workout or bag when I am sick. Is there some sort of way of telling? There were several times yesterday that I thought I was pushing it too hard considering how I felt, but I kept going thankfully.

Okay, now to help my immune system this week I am going to try to get to bed much earlier than usual. I suffer from not wanting to miss anything, and trying to catch up on the day late at night. I stay up way later than I should, and as a result, suffer from it the following day feeling sluggish.

Flip Turns: They are slightly less embarrassing now!
Running: I think I am back. I ran 2 miles in 14:30 on Wednesday. It felt great to run at the tempo. I have not done that in a long time. I am working on some new running plans. I will share more soon.


Jacquie Tumminia said...

Don't get too discouraged when you don't feel good in the water. From someone who swam competitively for 19 years: I only felt good in the water once or twice a week out of 6-8 3000-7000 yard practices. You just hope and pray that the competition days fall on one of your good days.

Scott Casella said...

I know exactly what you are talking about. We have to much to do and not enough time to do. This week I am done working for the most part until I start training in two weeks so I have the extra time to train and it is GREAT! I'm glad to hear you are feeling better. I let you barrow my superman cape next time I see you.

Medievalist86 said...

I hate running when I'm sick. Glad to hear you're feeling better. Even more glad to hear you're running - nice tempo run! Hopefully we can meet up over Thanksgiving (and certainly over my Christmas vacation)!