Maybe I was a bit over-trained and over stressed.
As I look back on the past 3 months, in light of the great run I had this morning and the wonderful mood I am in, I think I was over trained. After years of training I have gained an understanding of the toll training takes on my body. I have learned the signs of being over trained and when I need to chill out and rest some. The last few months I have missed all the tell tale signs. After a couple of weeks of rest and a few days off I am feeling refreshed for some further rest.
Looking back I should of known. I was easily angered, tired all the time, not sleeping though the night with night sweats, dizzy at work, loss of appetite and general disinterest in what normally gets me going. Small little errors or issues would put me into a sour mood for days which made me less then desirable to be around.
After deciding not to run Haney to Harrison and taking an impromptu easy week, despite planning to train, I woke up this morning feeling tired. So, I rolled over and went back to sleep. Two hours later I woke up feeling rested and relaxed and cheery. I have not felt like this in a long time. I went out for an easy run in Stanley Park and I was back to my dopey smile run. When I am rested and happy I can't help but grin stupidly when I am running, especially if I am running fast.
Looking back on my running performances I was over stressed. A big key in my improvements in running has been realizing that this is what I want to do more then anything else. My races this fall were not like that. I was nervous and anxious or just was not into racing. I was stressed about having to perform to get a good result to send to sponsors or to try and win prize money. I was concentrating on the outcome rather then the process.
I am going to let you in on another little secret. I love figure skating and by 'love' I mean slight obsession. I was watching figure skating yesterday and the commentators mentioned something that can be applicable to running. When a skater is stressed and thinking about the outcome rather then the process they get tight, their shoulders are at their ears, stiff knees and it seems to take twice as much energy to do what would normally be quite easy. Sound familiar? This sounds like my last race!
I guess my goal for the next few weeks is to rest and gain a bit of weight. I never ever thought I would want to gain weight. I am a bit of a bag of bone and muscle at the moment and I think it is getting a bit too extreme. I saw a cute guy when I was out to dinner the other night. My friend commented that he was totally my type when I commented that he was a bit too skinny. Then I realized I was that skinny. Oops.
For some inspiration and to see what one can do when they rise to the moment and compete relaxed check out Elizabeth Manley at the 88 Olympics!