You can easily tell how swamped school is keeping me when you don’t hear from me more than once a week.  With the end of the 10-week quarter quickly approaching, and Kenya soon as well, every day is like a race to finish everything I absolutely need to, get a little ahead where I can, and somehow find the coveted “balance” that so many of us desperately seek!

Last week, I celebrated my 2 year-wedding anniversary and my 26th birthday.  And how did I spend my birthday, you ask?  Besides class, I ran — for the first time since the MCM.  Granted, it was only 4 miles, but it was nice– a good a.m. run along the lakefront and through the park.  Saturday morning, in bizarre 60+ temps (bizarre only because we usually have snow by this time of year!), Jack and I headed south and ran a nice 10-mile loop at Waterfall Glen.  I was amazed because though I felt fine before, perhaps because of the hills, or the fact that I had just run a marathon not even two weeks before, my legs were really tired.  Lead-like.  As much as I’d like to keep running, I think I need to take some active recovery and actually practice like the pros… get away from running for a while. (gasp!)

Enter: crosstraining.  Helllooooooooo, periodization!

So began my week this morning, a 60 minute spinning class at a gym not far away from home (very close to exactly one mile).  It was nice.  I ran the mile there, had an excellent spinning work-out for 60 minutes, and ran the other mile home.  Stretching post-spinning never felt so good.  Crosstraining is something I used to do religiously, but when I’m training for a marathon, I do what seems to make the most sense: run.  In the next 4-6 weeks, though, with my Kenya escapades and later, the DR adventure, I think I next to partake in the non-running cycle of periodization (read: active recovery) to give my body a break, to avoid overtraining, and to give myself some mental downtime from running.  I’m terrified that I’ll come back running sluggish 9-minute (or slower) miles, but I think in the long run (no pun intended), I’ll be the wiser for it.

Besides, if the pros take time off from running after their big racing seasons, I think I can afford to, too.  If nothing else, it’ll make attaining my goals next year even sweeter 🙂

What'cha thinkin?