Friday, October 7, 2016

5 Signs of Running Withdrawal

Over the next few weeks, many runners will be crossing finish lines for their fall goal races.  And as is usually advised after completing a hard running effort, recovery is the next practical step to healing to body up from the pounding it endured.  However, as is unique about runners, the moment we take to relish our achievement is quickly followed up by a desire to begin our next training cycle or maintenance workouts.  We go through a sort of "running withdrawal."  So for this Friday Five, I'm linking up with Courtney at Eat Pray Run DC, Cynthia at You Signed Up for What, and Mar at Mar on the Run to give the five signs we're craving the trails while recovering.

1.  Vicarious running - Even though we are taking time off, our obsession with every other person's running progress seems become the highest priority.  We gobble up every Runner's World article and running books in addition to spending extra time analyzing our friends' training on Strava/Twitter/etc.   In some way, we live through the experience of others to meet our own need to hit the roads.

2.  Unhelpful Recovery Methods - Whether it's in an article online or instructions from a coach, taking time away from running after a major race is an important task.  However, we as runners also seem to have a propensity to sabotage our healing by engaging in other activities of similar intensity.  Even as I write this blog post I'm currently making my way to 20k steps for the day at a 2.5 mph pace on the treadmill.  Going any slower or shorter just felt wrong!

3.  Cluelessness Regarding Free Time - When an hour or two of every evening as well as weekend mornings are spent on the roads, this newfound free time leaves us a little stir crazy.  Suddenly the idea that we can have a "social life" is a real possibility.  We may even discover that there is a crowd who stays up later than 10pm.

4.  "The Ache" - Within every runner, there is an itch that can only be scratched by doing a workout.  This desire to run seems to intensify during periods of breaks.  We feel our legs twitch when we see a runner go by, especially when the weather is perfect for a few easy miles.  At moments like these, we realize running has become a part of our DNA.

5.  Planning Ahead - It's kind of crazy that the moment we stop running, we are already looking to the future for when we can head out again.  We mark our calendars and start signing up for races so those blank days on the training schedule feel complete.  Even those of us who procrastinate find ourselves making preparations.

What is your running withdrawal symptom?

Happy running!

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