Benefit of a Break

After taking a few days off from writing I am refreshed and ready to share what I have been up to. The weekend was wonderful – I celebrated my birthday with the best of friends as well as time with my father. The sun was shining bright without a cloud in the sky Saturday morning while I ran my last long run before my race this weekend. I had a good run of 8 miles. Despite the ups and downs I have experienced the past four weeks, I feel strong and ready for this half marathon.

Sunday would have been perfect to ride my bike outside – in the afternoon. I had to get my workout in that morning, so I opted for a spin bike while it was cloudy and cool in the morning. I also got a swim in before going to visit my father. Knowing he is back at home and recovering from his ordeal was a wonderful birthday gift. Monday was my rest day but also an opportunity to have dinner with my running coach, talk about our plans for the race in Washington DC this weekend, and  -yes I will admit it – we watched the final episode of The Bachelor. Sometimes mindless reality TV is the cure for life’s stresses. It takes my mind off of my own dramas for a while.

This morning I swam. This is a taper week for me so I did not swim long, just 1,400 meters. I did have a quality main set of 5 x 150 meter repeats. Three of us were doing the workout and I was the slowest swimmer. I didn’t mind, it challenged me to push it. I was able to do each 150 meter repeat touching in under three minutes. I may have been the slowest of the group, but I was swimming some of my faster times so it was encouraging. This evening I ran my last tempo run before the race. The workout was a 4 mile main set at my race goal pace. I did it – actually averaging a little faster than my goal. One more confidence building run to get me in the right frame of mind to run the half marathon this weekend.

I learned earlier this year from my triathlon coach the importance of a rest day when I am training intensively. At first I was reluctant, but I have come to enjoy the day. It has not hurt my performance, which I had feared, but rather I have seen an improvement in my performance. Likewise, this little break was the longest I have gone in writing this blog since I started it over a year ago. There were many nights I stayed up late to get my post in for the day. As a result I did not always get the sleep I required. Inadequate rest sometimes does not help with training. This year I have remained committed to writing and sharing my experiences. I also am learning the importance of rest in writing. I may not always have something to share, or the time to type it, but I want what I do share to matter. I hope to continue to influencing other to try (tri?) fitness challenges they would never have dreamt of doing. The process is fulfilling – regardless of speed. Just like my swim this morning, my pace is relative to my own personal progress. Which I hope to always have a net positive slope.

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