Last week was the eighth week of the marathon specific phase of my training for the First Light Marathon. I’ve got less than two weeks to go now and I got a nice little head start on the taper phase by coming down with the flu and bronchitis last week. You win some, you lose some. I’m not sure if we are counting this as a win or a loss at this point. We shall see …
Here is what my training looked like the week of 12.25.17 – 12.31.17:
Monday – Easy: 6.25 miles (8:54 pace)
I met two of my girlfriends for an early Christmas morning run, before the day got hectic. It was chilly out and we had a great run. I started noticing on my way back home that my throat was sore. I don’t know why I didn’t notice it earlier that morning except for that perhaps my brain was not fully functioning at that hour. As the day went on, I felt progressively worse and worse. The sore throat got worse and I ended up with a headache, earache, fever, chills, nausea … you name it, I had it. I went to bed around 6 p.m. Christmas night and didn’t wake up until after 8 a.m. the next morning.
Tuesday – Off
When I woke up Tuesday, I still felt really bad. I fell asleep in the car on our trip home and proceeded to take a 4 hour nap once we got back to the house. We were able to stop at the doctor’s office on the way home and I didn’t test positive for strep or the flu (at least the strain that was tested for), so that was good news! I was convinced that I would be cured with a little more sleep (and perhaps some steroids).
Wednesday – Easy: 8 miles (9:03 pace)
I felt like a new human when I woke up Wednesday morning. I didn’t feel 100%, but I felt so much better than the day before. It was amazing! All of my aches were mostly gone and I was left with some good old congestion. I was originally supposed to do a workout on Wednesday. It would’ve been a one mile warm up, a 10 mile aerobic threshold tempo and a one mile cool down. I talked with my coach about it and we decided that it would be best to postpone any workouts until I was fully recovered. I did an easy run on the treadmill instead. I felt surprisingly good. I had plenty of energy and it opened up my sinuses a bit I do believe.
Thursday – Easy: 8 miles (8:45 pace)
I felt good when I woke up again Thursday morning! Whew. I really thought I had kicked this thing. I did an another easy run on the treadmill around lunch. Unfortunately, by Thursday evening, I started feeling really crummy again. My headache was back, my throat was sore again and I was coughing like mad.
Friday – Easy: 7.5 miles (8:15 pace)
Being the stubborn runner that I am, I tempted fate and ran anyway Friday morning (and outside at that). This was by far the worst decision that I made all week. By Friday evening I was full-blown sick again with all of the same symptoms, adding back the fever and chills. It was miserable.
Saturday – Off
I went back to the doctor Saturday morning and she said that I likely had a strain of the flu that didn’t show up on the first test and now, on top of that, I also had bronchitis and laryngitis to boot. Yipee. I did my best to rest as much as I possibly could. I kept the fluids going and was basically worthless for the rest of the weekend.
Sunday – Off
Sunday was more of the same. All the rest. None of the running. I was originally supposed to do my last long run of the training cycle (a 20 mile moderate pace long run). I’m not worried about missing a long run at this point. I know that my endurance is where it needs to be. I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t a little worried about missing an entire critical week of training though. I’ve still not decided whether or not I will race the marathon or not. I’m just taking it day by day and hoping that the decision will become super apparent at some point relatively soon.
Total – 29.75 miles
Anyone have experience racing after being sick? How did it affect your performance? On one hand, I know I will actually be a little bit more rested than I would’ve otherwise been, but I also know that my body will likely not be fully recovered to the level of fitness where I would’ve been had I not gotten sick in the first place.