I can't tell for sure what it is, but I have some guesses, and when I have guesses, I figure that the answer is probably a little bit of every one of them.
Causes of feeling like crap:
- Drastic long run increase to 20 miles and my body wondering WTF I did/WTF I will try to make it do next
- All the kids are back to school swapping germs and now my immune system has to go to work again! Indeed, two of the clients/families I saw today mentioned feeling under the weather. I don't know if it was the power of suggestion or legit, but suddenly my lymph nodes feel puffy and my throat doesn't want to swallow effectively. (I'm very susceptible to suggestion btw. Supermarket displays and infomercials are made for people like me. I have a suspicion that I would make the best hypnotism subject ever.)
- Work has been kicking my butt. My schedule has been earlier this week than usual, with some late nights still in there. Lots of mental stress in general due to various things.
- I haven't been eating much since the 20 mile run, not even that day. Partially laziness, partially difficulty getting a lot of food in myself while I'm working all day (no lunch break and my office is my car), partially the fact that I'm a grazer anyway, but I think that style isn't letting me get enough in my system.
Trying to listen to my body, not beat myself up about being tired. I just am. Maybe I don't need a good reason. Maybe I just need to stop for a minute and plant my butt on the couch tonight. I look back at a lot of my good runs and my fastest runs, and they were done after periods of rest and during periods of low mileage. I don't need to wear myself out to run well.
Anyway.....when I'm tired, I get neurotic. Way neurotic, to the point where the husband is well tuned-in and when I start getting irrational and bitchy and teary-eyed, he turns to me and says, "Just get some sleep already!" and I do. So I'm lying on the couch trying to be a good runner and take a rest day, and my brain starts going nuts with all its thoughts of how inadequate I am and how I wish I could run faster and how I haven't improved so much after all and I'm reading old blog entries trying to prove to myself that I have improved, I have I have I have, and then I find this one:
(Posted it in its own paragraph so it doesn't get lost amongst the ramblings.)
THAT is what this marathon is about. Not a goal time or pace. Not speed. Not anything else other than the fact that it wasn't all that long ago that running 26.2 miles seemed utterly ridiculous. Not something I would ever do, EVER. It was something that pro runners and people with freakish genetic structures would do. I didn't even think about it or lament about it - it was just a fact that I was not a marathon runner. Like something in an encyclopedia or on Jeopardy. "Not ever going to be capable of running 26.2 miles in one stretch." "Who is Kate, Alex?"
In less than three weeks, I will be doing it. I will be doing something that used to seem so much bigger than me. Somewhere along the line, amongst spending so much time associating with people who eat marathon medals for breakfast, I've completely forgotten that. I need to keep that awe and wonder and that spirit of fun and awesomeness and savor every second of it for what it is. Forget how many of those seconds there are. This is it. This is me achieving the impossible.
Also....I am STILL raising money for GOTR this time around!!! Fundraising page here!!