Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 17 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A day off

I'm doing something unusual today. I wasn't planning it, but this morning I decided it was the right thing to do and the right time to do it. I'm taking a day off. From running, that is. Even though I was scheduled to run 7 up-tempo miles today, I decided to take the day off.

I've been feeling really depleted lately. I had two terrible runs this past weekend. On Saturday, I struggled mightily through 14 miles. I felt horrible. After just 6 miles my legs were totally gassed. I felt as if I was running the last 6 miles of a marathon. On top of that, my breathing was quite labored. My pace was slow, yet I had to stop and rest multiple times, especially in those last few miles. It was all I could do to finish.

Sunday's 7-miler wasn't much better. I was motivated to go, and mentally felt up to it. I purposefully slowed my pace significantly, and I actually felt okay for the first couple miles, but then I knew. It was going to be another struggle to finish, and it was, despite the adjusted pace. The same aches, fatigue, and breathlessness frustrated me. I was relieved I didn't have a run scheduled for Monday.

Instead of a run, I had my kettlebell and suspension training class last night. I felt good walking into class, but after the instructor took us through a brief warm-up my legs were screaming. Yes, everybody else was tired, too, but my legs were too fatigued for the minimal warm-up we had just completed. Fortunately, the rest of the class was filled with learning new moves which were focused on the upper body and core. My legs weren't taxed significantly again.

That brings us to this morning. I was too tired getting out of bed. Even after I got up I wanted, needed to lie back down. I was also dreading my run. I was worried about feeling like crap again. I didn't want that. I didn't need the discouragement. So, in a very rare moment of clarity, I made the decision to take the day off. And I immediately felt relief.

Don't get me wrong. I questioned the wisdom of my inaction many times throughout the day, especially when the sun came out and the air warmed beautifully. But I have to admit, my body is showing signs of overtraining. This surprises me, because I have not done enough to be overtrained. I've trained much, much more seriously and heavily many times in the past.

If it's not overtraining, though, what is it? I feel depleted. It makes me wonder if there is something physically wrong. Just in case, I began taking a multivitamin. I'm eating more iron and protein, vegetables and fruits. I'm taking my naps. I'm being kind to myself. Hopefully this will work itself out.

I have my weight-training class again tomorrow, so that will be three consecutive days of no running. I'm anxious to see how I'll feel when I start up again on Thursday.


Tina Fariss Barbour said...

Sometimes we have to listen to our bodies and what they have to tell us. I can easily feel guilty for taking a "break" from what I had planned, too, but we all need a break sometimes. I hope you get your strength back soon.

Bengal said...

Don't push yourself so much. You are too hard on yourself at times to me. You're doing great and you should be proud.

Anonymous said...

I just came across your blog. I love it. I also suffer from Depression. The fatigue I get from depression is what's ruined my life. It's so great you took up running. I'll keep reading your blog.

Anonymous said...

You did the write thing and listened to your body. it's ok to take a little break and rest. I hope you are feeling better by now and your runs are good again!