Baby, it’s hot outside.
This may be one of the few times that the atrociously hot weather has actually helped my running… in terms of speed, or sometimes, lack thereof.
Scour the internet for the query “how long do I need to rest after a marathon?” and you’ll get all sorts of answers. Some claim that you should rest 1 day for every mile you ran—like 26 days for a marathon, 13 for a half, that sort of thing. Others will say a full month of no running whatsoever, just cross-training (and nothing too extreme). And some, still, will say just to listen to your body, for it will let you know when it’s up to running again.
I’ve usually gone the route of option 3. In looking over my other two marathons this year (Boston and Sunburst), I rested for about 5 days post-race before I began running again. As much as I can recollect from my other previous marathons, that has seemed to be the norm for me. This time around, following San Fran, I took a full 9 days off—though I (surprisingly) felt great by about 4 days afterward. (As I mentioned in an earlier post, though, I think that’s more related to the time I spent on my feet on vacation than an inadequate marathon race effort).
What’s more, when I say that these sauna-like temps seem to have helped me recover, I mean it in the sense that it’s seemingly impossible to run as well (read: fast) as I want to when it’s 100+ outside (really or just perceived). Combine that “forced slower pace” the digits on the thermostat bring, with the fact that my body didn’t feel the effects from marathoning for a full 9 days, and it’s pretty incredible that I don’t, at all, feel like I ran a hilly foot race just a couple weeks ago. That’s pretty sweet… and was totally unintentional on my part!
It’s pretty tough to run when you feel like you’re suffocating in precipitation. Also, it’s pretty stupid to really exert yourself when it’s dangerously hot outside. I run in the p.m. for about half my runs each week, so if you find yourself in my camp, just be careful. Drink when you need to, wear sunscreen, don the light-colored clothing, and remember, if you want to do this running stuff for the long haul, you have to do things right today. 🙂
My PSA for the week.